Is it ok to take Ambien with Zoloft, Benadryl, and Nexium?

Mistybaby3311 asked...

i have a sinus cold and im want to take benadryl with the rest of my medication is it ok

Expert Answer

Jennifer Serafin, N.P. is a registered nurse and geriatric nurse practitioner at the Jewish Homes for the Aged in San Francisco.

Benedryl (diphenhydramine)is a powerful antihistamine. It works by blocking the response of smooth muscle in your nose/sinuses to histamine, which is a potent vasodilator released during an allergy attack. This is what makes your nose run when exposed to an allergen, eventually causing sinus congestion.

The problem with benedryl is that it can cause significant anticholinergic effects (dry mouth/increased heart rate/urine retention), as well as marked sedation. In older persons, this medication has been shown in numerous studies to cause confusion, falls, and lethargy. It is on the Beers List of medications to avoid in this age group, due to the side effects.

If you have a cold virus, benedryl would not really help you with congestion. You would be better off taking guaifenesin (found in Mucinex or a similar store brand decongestant product), as this would thin your mucus and help decongest your nose. If you have congestion due to true allergies, then I would suggest taking loratidine (claritin) instead, as it has less side effects than benedryl.

However, your question really was about mixing benedryl with your current meds. I would say it is never recommended to take benedryl and ambien together, as they are both too sedating. This would really sedate you, which could cause a fall or confusion. Good luck!