Chlorpheniramine
(chlorpheniramine maleate)

What is chlorpheniramine?

Chlorpheniramine is an antihistamine active ingredient available in over-the-counter (OTC) medicines that treat hay fever and other respiratory allergies. It can be the only active ingredient in an allergy medicine or found in medicines that relieve other symptoms, such as body aches and pains, or symptoms associated with the common cold.

What is chlorpheniramine used to treat?

  • Respiratory allergies
  • Hay fever
Common brands containing chlorpheniramine:
  • Advil
  • Chlor-Trimeton
  • Dimetapp
  • Tylenol
  • Store Brands (ex. Walmart’s “Equate” store brand or CVS Health store brand)

How much chlorpheniramine can you take?

Different types of products containing this active ingredient have different strengths. That’s why it is always important to read and follow the Drug Facts label. Most medicines warn against use of an active ingredient for longer than 7-10 days. Stop and ask a doctor if symptoms persist.

Safety guide for chlorpheniramine

Chlorpheniramine is approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and is safe and effective when used according to the Drug Facts label directions.

Ask a healthcare provider before use if:

  • You have emphysema, chronic bronchitis, glaucoma, or trouble urinating due to an enlarged prostate gland.
  • You are pregnant or breastfeeding.
  • You are taking sedatives or tranquilizers.

Do not use if:

  • Do not give an OTC multi-symptom cough and cold product with chlorpheniramine to a child under 6 years old unless instructed by a healthcare provider.
  • Never use chlorpheniramine or any OTC medicine to sedate or make a child sleepy.

Stop use and ask a doctor if:

  • You take too much. Immediately contact a healthcare provider or the poison control national helpline at 800.222.1222.

What are the side effects of chlorpheniramine?

  • When using medicines containing chlorpheniramine, drowsiness may occur. You should avoid alcoholic drinks and use care when driving a motor vehicle or operating machinery.