All medications carry with them some risks and side effects, but often, the benefit of a medication far outweighs the negative. Actifed, the brand name of triprolidine with pseudoephedrine, is not without its own risks and side effects. One such side effect, Xerostomia, has the potential to occur as a minor inconvenience or a larger dental health issue.
What is Actifed (Triprolidine with Pseudoephedrine)?
Actifed is the brand name for triprolidine with pseudoephedrine. According to Drugs.com, it is a combination antihistamine and decongestant. Actifed is an over-the-counter medication “used to treat sneezing, cough, runny or stuffy nose, itchy or watery eyes, hives, skin rash, itching and other symptoms of allergies and the common cold.” Side effects of Actifed are typically minimal if the directions on the package are followed, other drug interactions are avoided and individuals discuss additional health concerns with their primary care physician.
What is Xerostomia?
Xerostomia is the proper name for dry mouth or cotton mouth. The National Institute of Dental and Craniofacial Research defines Xerostomia as “the condition of not having enough saliva, or spit, to keep the mouth wet.” Have you ever stood up to give a speech and found that your mouth was too dry to speak? You were suffering from stress-induced Xerostomia. In your situation, a drink of water and some friendly faces in the crowd might have helped you get back on track. However, Xerostomia can also be brought on as a side effect of certain medications or a symptom of a pre-existing medical condition. In addition, NIDCR reports that Xerostomia can cause dental decay and mouth infections.
What Should I Know About Actifed and Xerostomia?
If you are using Actifed to treat a cold or allergies, you may experience Xerostomia as a side effect. If dry mouth occurs in relation to the medication and doesn’t persist, the side effect might be mild enough to overlook. If cotton mouth occurs in conjunction with other side effects and/or persists past the discontinuation of the drug, it may be necessary to rule out other medical problems or change to another medication. As with Actifed and any other medication, discuss all problems and side effects with your doctor.
Determining whether the cotton mouth caused by your cold medicine is a major problem or a short term inconvenience is, as always, best determined between you and your healthcare provider.