This article is the third in a series that explores the relationship, if any, between drugs and dry mouth or cotton mouth. In this article I will explore the relationship of Claritin (loratadine) with Xerostomia (dry mouth).
In English please!
Dry mouth is what we call not having enough saliva in the mouth. I have dry mouth due to a medical condition. Dry mouth can also be caused by the use of a variety of drugs including Claritin. This is what medicinenet.com has to say, “We all need saliva to moisten and cleanse our mouths and digest food. Saliva also prevents infection by controlling bacteria and fungi in the mouth. When we don’t produce enough saliva, our mouth gets dry.”
Cotton Mouth, though also known as a type of snake, is a colloquial term for dry mouth. Wiktionary defines cotton mouth as “An oral dryness often associated with certain medicines and recreational drugs.” Another term for cotton mouth, which is used colloquially, is pasties.
Dry mouth is not a disease. I have an autoimmune disorder whose claim to fame is dry mouth. There are many autoimmune diseases that cause dry mouth. I also take Wellbutrin, an anti depressant which can cause dry mouth. Other medical situations such as radiation therapy, Alzheimer’s, diabetes, anemia, cystic fibrosis and high blood pressure can cause dry mouth/cotton mouth. The word Xerostomia is a synonym for dry mouth used in the medical field
Looking into the correlation, I found many references to Claritin causing dry mouth.
What is this over the counter medication?
Loratadine, marketed by Schering-Plough, treats allergies. It is an allergy medication that didn’t make me sleepy. It stopped working, and I’m now using another medication, but Claritin is great for many people. You may know it also as Alavert or Dimetapp ND. There are many others names, but those are the two that I think are the most well known other than Claritin.
Claritin is an antihistamine, which is a “drug that counteracts the release of histamine such as occurs in allergic reactions.” Claritin is used to treat the symptoms of allergies, which is the reason I was taking this drug. I had allergies that popped up every spring and caused watery and itchy eyes and an itchy throat. It is also used if you get hives.
Can I prove Claritin causes dry/cottonmouth/Xerostomia?
According to drugs.com, dry mouth or cotton mouth is one of the less serious potential side effects of Claritin/ loratadine.
On healthsquare.com, I read that “Claritin is available in syrup, regular tablets, and rapidly dissolving tablets called Reditabs.” One of the more common side effects is dry mouth.
At allergies.emedtv, I once again read that a side effect of loratadine/Claritin is dry mouth.
In studies, sleeplessness and dry mouth/Xerostomia were the most commonly reported side effects of Claritin.
I read “Key adverse event(s) related to dental treatment: Xerostomia (normal salivary flow resumes upon discontinuation) in children (2-5 years).” In this same article under patient education, dry mouth is noted as a side effect of loratadine. This study also notes that less than 2 percent of adults and children experience side effects such as cotton or dry mouth.