Zyrtec and Cold Meds.

Updated on February 16, 2009
J.H. asks from Goodlettsville, TN
25 answers

My son {will be 4 in March} started taking zyrtec this year for his allergies. It has worked so well. He use to get so congested and have to have breathing treatments for weezing. My question is, at night he is coughing alot and I want to know what other mommas do to help with this. I use vicks baby rub and a humidafier {spelling??}. I called the doctor and asked what I could give with the zyrtec to help the draining from this throat at night to help with the coughing, they said the rules have changed and no one under 4 can take cold meds. He has took med. sense he was 7 months old because of the coughing, runny nose, and weezing. Plus he will be 4 in a few months and weighs 55lbs. What would ya'll do to help your child at night, or know of meds that are safe to take with zyrtec? {If course I will check it out before I would just use it}! Thanks

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L.M.

answers from Greensboro on

I already saw this response, but for a nagging, nighttime cough, Vicks Vapor rub on the feet with socks works every time for my kids and me. Probably silly, but it really works.

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J.D.

answers from Raleigh on

I give my 3 year old robitussin, just like I always have...I did it for my 8 year old, and I will do it for my 8 month old. It depends on whether you are comfortable with it or not, but, let me just say they changed the rules because of RARE cases of people not following directions and using as it is supposed to be used. They didn't change ingredients or anything. If you're not comfortable with a full dose, just give a partial dose. Also, I have PERSCRIBED cough suppressant for my 3 year old, from the last time he was sick...so don't let them feed you that info that they CAN'T give you anything. If you're not comfortable with over the counter, get a second opinion from another doctor or allergist. Good luck!

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W.R.

answers from Hickory on

Both of my kids have asthma, and it always got worse at night with the coughing and wheezing. I tried those pillow cases that are suppose to keep out dust mites, etc.. and they worked great. The last time I checked they were like $8.00 at Wal-mart. They were a blessing for my kids. It put a stop to the night time coughing.

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A.H.

answers from Nashville on

I know this may sound crazy....but my daughter's preschool teacher once told me to rub garlic on her feet and chest before bedtime and/or cut a few cloves and sit next to her bed. Also make chicken noodle soup and and garlic to it as well. I was VERY unsure, but it was natural and what could it hurt except to smell a bit? It actually helped her! The warm liquid helped I am sure and the garlic has natural properties that help heal. When she was really sick it did not work as well, but for that nagging runny nose congested stuff that kids get, it worked! I also used the suckers for sore throats for kids (in moderation) and it also worked at times.

Also have your child's bed elevated at the head to help with the drainage at night.

Best of luck.

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M.N.

answers from Raleigh on

My daughter who is 5 now, had the symptoms you've described - allergies, breathing treatments, wheezing and for a long time we limped along with Benedryl. About 2 years ago her doctor prescribed a 4mg chewable Singulair tablet and 1t of Zyrtec at night and it has made all the difference! We rarely, if ever use the nebulizer and on those occassions that she is around animals or dust, we can safely add a Benedryl on top of it.

I know there is a lot of concern now about smaller children and medicine but she has been on this for about 2 years and is just now 44 pounds. Recently I increased her Zyrtec to 2t since she is on the edge of the next age/higher dose range and it's worked really well in combination with the Singulair.

Ask your doctor, it's worth a try.

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A.B.

answers from Clarksville on

I know you mentioned drainage causing the cough, but you may want to make sure that it is not a cough associated with asthma. My daughter didn't usually wheeze, but for months she had this terrible sounding cough that woke her up every night. I had mentioned her coughing to the doctor, but because of my assumption that it was from her having one cold after another or just bad allergies (which run in my family), he didn't make the connection with asthma until she had to be hospitalized. After that, she was put on Pulmicort (a steroid breathing treatment) and Zyrtec, and the cough hasn't been back since. You may want to talk to your doctor about the cough and whether it indicates a more serious breathing problem.

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S.C.

answers from Louisville on

J.,
I'm sorry I don't have any advice to add to what the other moms shared with you, however, I do want to warn you about Zyrtec. I know medicine effects children in different ways, however, Zyrtec changed my 7yr old son when he was taking it for a very short time. He became aggressive, angry and lacked much of his self control. After enduring two weeks of this unusual behavior in him, my husband and I determined it may be a side effect of his new allergy medicine, zyrtec. Sure enough, when we stopped giving it to him, in a matter of one to two days, he was his normal self. Actually, I got a lot of wonderful, comforting advice on Mamasource. If you get a chance, click on my name and read all the advice given to me about zyrtec. Good luck! S.
P.S. My son is now on Allegra and doing great!

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R.W.

answers from Charlotte on

The best cough medicine I have found that works very well is Delsym. It is a little pricey, but is the ONLY thing that controls my children's coughs (and mine for that matter). Talk with your pharmacist and make sure your child can take it with the Zyrtec, but my children have taken it since they were babies and it also tastes good too. I have also given Delsym to my kids at the same time I give them benedryl for runny noses. So I knock both out at the same time.

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L.B.

answers from Charlotte on

Try Delsym cough syrup. It's the best! It's safe for kids and adults and lasts 10-12 hours. I have 4 kids and have given this to all of them when needed. It was recommendeded to me several years ago by my pediatrician. I have a child with asthma and when he gets sick and gets a cough it scares me to death and we have ended up at the dr/ER. Seriously, this stuff is great. The original flavor is orange and it's pretty good. They have a grape flavor. My kids like it but I think it's gross. Good luck!

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J.D.

answers from Raleigh on

I give my 3 year old robitussin, just like I always have...I did it for my 8 year old, and I will do it for my 8 month old. It depends on whether you are comfortable with it or not, but, let me just say they changed the rules because of RARE cases of people not following directions and using as it is supposed to be used. They didn't change ingredients or anything. If you're not comfortable with a full dose, just give a partial dose. Also, I have PERSCRIBED cough suppressant for my 3 year old, from the last time he was sick...so don't let them feed you that info that they CAN'T give you anything. If you're not comfortable with over the counter, get a second opinion from another doctor or allergist. Good luck!

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L.M.

answers from Charlotte on

Stick with the home remedies- a spoonful of honey twice a day and chicken soup..it knocks it right out of them. You shouldn't have to do it more than 4 days or so.

A.K.

answers from Huntington on

I know that this will sound strange, but try putting Vicks Vapor Rub on his feet and then put socks on before bed. Make sure that you wash his feet in the morning, but this really works when everything else fails! Good Luck!

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P.B.

answers from Raleigh on

I am surprised he is not on breathing treatments / Nebulizer!

My son had the same thing & the Dr said he would most likely grow out of it by age 4-5. He is 5 1/2 and doing well. We do use claritin & benedryl during allergy seasons in Spring & fall.

My concern for you is, when our son had coughing fits at night, it was because he was wheezing & a breathing treatment always helped. His airway would be open & the coughing would stop.

In the mean time, try benedryl about an hour or so before bed, see if that helps.

See your Pediatrician, maybe get a second opinion.

K.C.

answers from Johnson City on

It is a lot harder to get cough meds now because many of the OTC ones have been pulled off the shelves because they appear to have addictive qualities. However, recent studies have shown that BUCKWHEAT honey is at least as effective, if not more effective than most prescription cough medicines. We have given both our 4-year-old and 2-year-old that and it cleared up coughs for them -- 1 tsp. in the morning and another at night at bedtime. Not sure exactly where you are, but we found it at Food City, but in the specialty foods section, not with the other honeys.

L.H.

answers from Johnson City on

My daughter (she's 11 yrs old now) does the same thing from time to time. She's on Rhinocort (nose spray), Pulmicort (inhaled), and Singulair. She takes her Singulair at night so when she starts coughing and having cold symptoms I give her Benadryl... just not at the same time as the Singulair. You can't give it at the same time as the Zyrtec either but I've found that Benadryl helps with the allergy like symptoms and it helps her ears to drain and dries up the drainage down her throat. Most times if she's coughing at night her nose is stuffy... so when she has symptoms I make sure she uses a nasal spray to open her nose before bedtime.

I've doctored her this way for many years and she does really well with it.

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C.L.

answers from Raleigh on

Hi J.,

I would suggest you talk to his doctor regarding the coughing... if he already has a history of wheezing and breathing treatments this could show his airways are still restricted. I have 3 girls and the oldest has asthma (her cough is a sign of distress/wheeze) the other two have over active airway disease (too young to diagnosis as asthma). They are all on preventative meds during cold season (flouvent for the 8 and 5 year old and pulmicort for the youngest) to help with the cough/wheeze.
I know before she was diagnosed with asthma I didn't know that a cough is a sign of distress/lung restriction, it doesn't have to be an audible wheeze! If we ever get to that it is much worse than if we treat the cough right away (nebulizer/breathing treatments).
Good luck figuring out what works best for your son!
Blessings,
Cris
www.handcraftedheartandsoul.com

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L.M.

answers from Greensboro on

I already saw this response, but for a nagging, nighttime cough, Vicks Vapor rub on the feet with socks works every time for my kids and me. Probably silly, but it really works.

E.M.

answers from Louisville on

steam up the bathroom sit with him for 15-20 mins... works everytime

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J.H.

answers from Charlotte on

Most recent articles are saying that cough meds in kids are ineffective. My doc and pharm told me to try a tablespoon of honey before bedtime. Good luck.

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F.W.

answers from Memphis on

Hi J., I have a 5 year old son, I give him childrens sudafed for drying up the drainage and for his cough liquid albuteral (prescription ) or breathing treatments. We have tried delysum but the breathing treatments work best. I would consult with your peditrician about any meds to find the best combo for your son.Also I had a friend recently took her daughter off zertec because of behavior and sleep changes , it might be worth it to look into the side effects . Some children do not get any and hopefully your son won't, but I have heard a lot of children do suffer from , anger and rage, aggressiveness, mood swings and trouble seeping when on zertec. good luck

L.J.

answers from Lexington on

Why don't you try natural remedies instead of Zyrtec? You could see what happens after a few days.

The humidifier is very good and that should help. I've also given my kids tea with honey, and chicken broth. Both of these have helped. You could also try tea with lemon.

What is your son allergic to? Are you positive there's not something in his room that's bothering him? Allergens such as pollen can be on his clothes or even in his hair. Also, you may want to try unscented soap and shampoo, and wash his clothes in unscented detergent. That could help.

I think that if you tackle the cause of his allergies (and there could be more than one trigger) that will do more good than treating your son with medicine. I speak from experience because I have allergies, too.

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C.K.

answers from Knoxville on

Hi J.,
In addition to what you are already doing, you could try elevating one end of the mattress and let him drink some warm apple juice at bed time (of course before brushing teeth!!). I don't know about that meds. Hope it helps!
Cyndi

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R.U.

answers from Clarksville on

my son was the same way. he had a cronic cough. even with cough meds. the dr. finally put him on just singulsr everyday at bed time. they come in chewables(he loved the taste). the cough went away.. now if he gets stoped up i give him over the counter bynadryl. the cheepest kind. oh, he does have allergs that cause it. not to food. good luck. R. u.

p.s. he is 10 now and no longer having to take singular. still some benadryl. zyrtec did nothing for my son.

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S.C.

answers from Wilmington on

J.,

Try local honey. Even our pediatrician suggests it. The honey will help sooth his throat and reduce coughing. You won't have to worry about drug interactions or over medicating. Local honey is also said to help with local allergens. It really helped my daugher with her coughing fits. You also don't have any problems with them taking it.

Hope this helps.

S.

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J.B.

answers from Nashville on

Sometimes honey and warm water helps. Good luck

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N.J.

answers from Owensboro on

Hi, J.. My son is now 9 and has been on Zyrtec since he was 2. For the coughing at night I keep a vaporizer constantly going in his room to add moisture to the air. The vaporizer steam helps to provide the moisture the air needs to supply it when the air is breathed into the air passages. Since I have kept the vaporizer constantly going, spring through winter, all year round, my son does not cough anymore unless he catches a cold which is not often. Thanks be to the Lord. I hope this helps with your son as I know it has worked great with my son.

I agree with you that Zyrtec is awesome. My daughter used to take it when she was younger and she is allergic to dog and cat dander, when she took Zyrtec she had no problems at all with her year round allergies or other allergies. Good luck with the vaporizer.

Blessings,
N.

C.R.

answers from Knoxville on

If he is wheezing does he have asthma? do you have a nebulizer for the times when he is wheezing? If you do have one I would try giving a nebulizer treatment with just saline before going to bed. Are his allergies indoor or outdoor allergens? It could be if they are outdoor allergens they are on his hair and skin, if he is going to bed without bathing then he is breathing all that junk all night. This can happen with indoor allergens as well. I woke up this am coughing and wheezing, I do have asthma and was pulling old gross carpet out of a house we are rehabbing. It was cold last night and I did not shampoo my hair before I went to bed, only showered. As soon as the heat kicks on I will wash my hair and launder my pillowcase as well. If your son has an allergy to dust mites you should invest in covers for the mattress and pillows. It might seem expensive at first but if it makes him feel better that is priceless, not to mention that you won't need to go to the drs. office-save$$ there and on medications. If you have any Q's please email me and I will do what I can to help you. Good Luck

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