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Venita Totten


Allergic rhinitis is a growing allergic illness brought on by the inhalation of allergens, resulting in a list of symptoms, including sneezing, watery eyes, runny nose, etc. Among the many treatment options available, H1-antihistamines are a popular choice for allergic rhinitis sufferers. First-generation antihistamines were the first to hit the market and were later discovered to be lipophilic, causing blood-brain barrier penetration and cognitive impairment. Second-generation antihistamines were later developed with lipophobic properties to eliminate any form of cognitive impairment. Both generations are readily available over-the-counter in tablet form, including two commonly used ones: diphenhydramine (Benadryl®) and fexofenadine (Allegra®). These medications claim to provide sufficient allergic symptom alleviation, creating a difficult situation for consumers to pick the right one. Taking a deeper glimpse at the availability, efficiency, and consequences of each one, the better option becomes obvious. Diphenhydramine is a first-generation antihistamine linked to sedation, learning impairment in children, motor vehicle and work-related accidents for adults, increased falling risks for the elderly, and intended overdosing. Meanwhile, fexofenadine ranks highly as a safe second-generation antihistamine with limited adverse effects, such as the rare development of cardiac arrhythmia with prolonged use, no cases of misuse, and a lack of cognitive impairment. Overall, fexofenadine is generally a safer alternative to diphenhydramine for treating the symptoms of allergic rhinitis because it does not penetrate the blood-brain barrier nor further leads to countless adverse effects related to cognitive impairment.

Creative Commons License

Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial 4.0 License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial 4.0 License