ZYRTEC Reviews

Average Rating: 2.0 (1790 Ratings)

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 Type: Over-the-counter Drug

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Key to Ratings: 1=LOW (I would not recommend taking this medicine.)
5=HIGH (this medicine cured me or helped me a great deal.)

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 1  Pet Dander & Seasonal Allergies Weight gain, Hair loss, Depression, Suicidal ideation, Inability to maintain focus, these are just the major side effects. The minor ones I can deal with. Upon finding Zyrtec, I truly believed I had found a 'miracle drug' for my year round allergies I combat with. Sadly and regretably I am painfully so very wrong. I have tried Claritin and Allegra in the past before coming across Zyrtec. However they do not relieve my allergy symptoms anywhere near to what the Zyrtec does. I am a 38 year old female and I have no children. I have always been pretty active in exercise and a very very happy go lucky girl. The somewhat tragic side effects this medication has caused me has literally changed my life. What sucks is I didn't realize it was the Zyrtec until these last few days. I have put on well over 20 pounds that I tell you is IMPOSSIBLE to get off. I have been basically starving myself on a thousand calorie a day diet and wondering why I keep putting on weight. Or at least not losing one single ounce no matter what I do. My depression level is the greatest its ever been. I have suicidal thoughts. I also have little to no motivation. Thee other lovely, oh so lovely side effect that is past the point of unbearable is the hair loss. It comes out in clumps when I wash it. It is so very disheartening. Id rather have itchy skin and watery eyes than FAT, BALD & DEPRESSED!! I stopped Zyrtec this morning. NEVER AGAIN!!! F 38 8 months
1X D
 2  seasonal, indoor&outdoor allergies Never again... turned me into a zombie. Too tired to get out of bed! F 33 1 years
 1  Took to help with severe allergies Had mood changes and tiredness. Like experiencing pms x100. Woke up to fingers convulsing. Scared had or was about to have seizure. Going back to taking plain benadryl. Ill take the sleepy side effect over this bs any day. F 26 1 days
30 mg
 2  seasonal allergies Difficulty swallowing, depression, panic attacks, dry mouth and nose, itchy prickly skin, headache, numbness in left arm and chest. Tingly feeling in hands and feet, numbness and soreness in back, aches and flu like symptoms. I first started taking this drug to relieve summer allergies to pollen and dust. I would have a itchy throat, tight chest, stuffy nose, and a persistant cough due to post nasal drip. At first this drug was wonderful. It helped relieve the tight chest and helped with the cough. But eventually I noticed I had a very dry mouth and nose and even had a little trouble swallowing at night. I also was depressed and had feelings of hopelessness. I read about other side effects that people were experiencing with this drug and tried to start lowering my intake to 10mg one night, 5mg the next for a few nights but because of handling some hay for the horses, I ended back on 10mg a night. Then I switched to 5mg a night for a week and am having nasty aches, pain in my chest and arm, and panic attacks. I even have a migraine. I thought I had some weird disease or a heart attack, feels like there's pressure inside. I went to the Dr and had an EKG. It was normal. My blood pressure was up some though. The Dr said I was depressed and gave me some antidepressants which I did not take. After reading all this other comments, I am so happy to find out that what I am feeling is not totally strange. I am doing my best to stop Zyrtec completely and can't wait until I don't take it at all! F 23 7 months
10 MG 1X D
 1  Allergies COUGH, ITCHING, FATIGUE, HEART IRREGULARITIES, DIFFICULTY WITH URINATION........ among others Wouldn't recommend this drug to a squirrel! I went through 2 years of living hell until I decided enough was enough! My PC kept telling me cough isn't a related side effect..........BUBKUS! I had a nagging cronic cough, thought it was heart related but they always tell me cough isn't a heart related issue either..........BUBKUS! We have a significant family heart history and everyone of my blood relatives developed cough from their heart related issue.......makes you wonder about the quality of healthcare today. I used to go to ONE doctor for 40 years that treated everything I ever encountered........in his office 99.9% of the time.......$20 tops!! Today, you need to see 10 doctors, $$$$$$$$Thousands in unnecessary test, and generally they throw in some kind of proceedure, whether you need it or not.............it's all about the $$$$$$$$$$$$$.......average inquiry for an illness has to be in the hundreds if not thousands!!! I stopped the drug and the cough immediately subsided in a couple days time! I have significant heart issues to which I should never have been placed on this medication in the first place. It was my cardiologist that suggested stop the drug.......it's the best way of knowing and not guessing as he has done in the past with my heart medications when questionable events arose. And then there's the WITHDRAWL from this drug...........if you haven't experienced it yet, you're in for the ride of a lifetime...........weeks if not months of severe itching, to t M 58 2 years
????????? 1X D
 1  Allergies I have had crazy itching to the point of ripping my skin open, mainly on my belly and rear end. However my whole body itches. I have also had a bout of depression, to the point of crying. I felt like living wasn't worth it. Have headaches often. I stopped the medication last night and CAN NOT WAIT for it to leave my system. I want to be itch free!!!! I'm sorry I ever took this medication, The makers of ZYRTEC should pull this drug off the market, its a shame they will allow people to go through these symptoms! F 35 1.5 months
10 mg 1X D
 1  Allergies I went nuts because I was addicted to a drug, that is over the counter. For allergies, I told my boss and co workers that I was having this problem. I wonít bother you with the details of my addiction, I will just say I had a choice between, shingles or losing my mind. The drug is called zyrtec, and it has ruined my life. I was unable to handle any stress when I was on the drug, I was not my happy cheerful self. I was a maniac, a lunatic. I couldnít control it either, look at the mess I made and I still havenít gotten any better, now Iím just poor and crazy. I canít find a job because I canít explain my behavior, because people donít want a crazy person around. Iím so sorry that it has come to this, Iím so sorry Iím nuts. I wish I wasnít and I wish my brain wasnít messed up from the damage that seems permanent now. I miss my life, Iím so sorry. My life has been ruined, because my mind wasn& Please warn people M 54 8 years
10 1X D
 2  allergies (indoor/outdoor/pet on and off sleepiness, rash, memory problems, possible wheezing and then headache after stopping use. I have taken claritin for years. Other than the occasional heard palpitation or sleepless night...I can't find anything wrong with it. However, we acquired 5 kittens last June. I know i'm allergic but they were young and we were trying to find them homes. A vet recommended I switch to Zyrtec for pet allergies. I tried taking it in the AM and was sleepy all day, tried it at night and couldn't sleep or had nightmares. WEnt back to the daytime dosage and dealt with the sleepiness. BUT, since I began taking it, I've encountered dizziness, sleepiness, rash, wheezing, among other weird developments. I cannot be certain that Zyrtec caused them all because cats can cause me to wheeze. However, the cats habe been out of the house for 10 days and I just stopped taking Zyrtec 3 days ago...all of a sudden I can breathe!!! All I can say is, everyone is different. For me, zyrtec is not worth the possible risks and Claritin just works better with less issue F 43 4 months
10 Mg 1X D
 1  Allergies/Asthma/Rhinitis Insomnia, weight gain, irritability, can't deal with people, flying off the handle for no reason, headaches, digestive issues, "spaced out" feeling, lack of concentration, can't seem to "grasp" what I'm reading, etc, etc. Absolutely useless as an antihistamine and I've tried them all. Claritin and Zyrtec do nothing for me. Complete waste of money. I'm back on Benadryl and prescriptions eye drops. I don't understand why doctors/allergists seem so gung-ho on this medication, because it DID NOT help at all but did give me unpleasant side-effects. These pills completely changed my personality, and judging from the other reviews here, I'm not the only one. AVOID. M 37 5 years
20mg 1X D
 1  Allergies Zyrtec has made me irritable, tired and nervous. I can't function. Stopping this drug immediately! F 51 2 days
1X D
 5  general allergies (tree pollen) none I'm very sensitive to medication, and this one is the only allergy medication I have been able to take that does not make me want to sleep for hours or give me a groggy medicine head. I love this stuff! F 37 2 years
5 or 10 MG 1X D
 1  Ragweed Allergies This med causes severe depression! Take at your own risk. They advertise it as non-sedating, that's almost laughable. It's as sedating as Benedryl. If you feel suicidal or dark depression, get off of it ASAP before you harm yourself or others. Take Quercetin for seasonal allergies from your local Health Food Store. It's a natural Mast Cell Stabilizer made from the white rind of lemons or onion peel. The allergy drug Nalcrom is the synthetic version of Quercetin. It's cheap, effective, and actually "good for you" in that it's a powerful anti-oxidant and will reduce free-radical damage (aging). † M 40 1 weeks
20 MG
 3  corn pollen / working in field I've been OK in the past taking zyrtec--drowsiness and feeling stoned shortly after starting. But this time, pollination season has gone on longer, and I'm getting side effects that last even on days when I'm not in the field, and not taking the drug. The headache in my temples is the worst, and now repeatedly recurs as the drug wears off. Also histamine-like symptoms (stuffiness, sore throat) which I assume is just a rebound effect. I feel like my salivary glands are also confused / sore--again, probably a rebound effect. When I try to take a full dose (10 mg pill) I might as well be a zombie for a few hours afterwards. That said, zyrtec is the ONLY allergy med I have found that works in extreme conditions. So long as I have to (basically) keep dumping corn pollen all over my face and body, I will continue to take zyrtec. I also take a couple when traveling in case of emergency, for similarly extreme circumstances. I would recommend this pill only for short-term use, and not more than half a pill every 12-18 hours (adult dose). In fact, I can feel the half pill wearing off at around 17-18 hours. When I start to itch, I take another half quickly, before I start to wheeze, snot up, get swollen eyelids. It is very effective, but IMHO, not really appropriate for long-term use, nor for "convenience" use. If you can deal with the situation by removing the allergen (or removing yourself to an allergen-free space) or by taking something weaker, do that. I wish they made a 5 mg version that I could split into two 2.5 mg doses (which might also be more appropriate for pediatric use). The take home: meds are not candy. They do things to your body. Treat them with respect, and don't use them unless you really HAVE to. In contrast, some other allergy meds score barely above placebo as far as effectiveness. They have fewer side effects--but they empty your wallet, and don't do much for your allergies. F 46 15 times
5 mg 2X D
 1  seasonal allergies Have taken this off and on for several years, this is the first time I've had such a quick reaction. Mega mood swings, anger one moment weepy the next. I have been diagnosed with Sjogrens which presents with dry mouth among other symptoms. Now I'm wondering if Zyrtec is the cause. I knew this stuff made me very drowsy so I only took a half a pill, 5 mg. Yesterday I came home and took an hour and a half nap and still slept well at my regular bed time! F 62 2 days
5 mg 1X D
 3  Indoor and outdoor allergies I would take the pill at night. I was so tired even at 2:00 the next day . I felt like a zombie and was having crazy and upsetting dreams all night. I did use a generic brand . I stopped cold turkey and I feel restless legs at night and headache. It definitely cured allergy symptoms , but is not worth the other feelings . F 46 4 days
10 mg
 2  Itching Worst allergy med ever!! This made me feel crazy. I was soo easily irritated by anything. I was a crazy women. It also made me sleepy. My mood was constantly down and I'm usually an outgoing fun person. It took my itching away, but I rather itch then Be so nervous and die of a stroke. Zyrtec withdrawls also stink from what i heard. F 26 2 weeks
5mg 1X D
 3  Allergies (pollen and mosquitoes) Fatigue, mild depression, moodiness It works on the allergies but the side effects are unpleasant. It depends on how bad your allergies are. I still take this about once a week in the summer if I spend an evening outdoors so the mosquito bites will not turn to hives. I also use it for a few days in a row if I have an acute pollen allergy attack. If you are so miserable from your allergies that you are tired and depressed, it is worth it to feel better physically and then the mild to moderate side effects (if that's all you have) are worth it. If you can be happy while having a full blown allergy attack, then I say don't take it. F 45 1 years
10 mg 1X D
 1  Allergies Anxiety, depression, anger My 5 year old son started taking otc zyrtec when he was 3 due to allergies per the doctor's suggestion. His allergies would lead to recurring sinus infections. While it seemed to help with itching and hives, it didn't help very much with the allergy/sinus symptoms. I would usually give the zyrtec to him as needed but the pediatrician said to start giving it to him daily. As soon as he was taking it daily, I started noticing changes in him such as irritabilty, crying over little things all the time, huge increase in separation anxiety, being scared of noises and darkness, and depression. I was getting concerned due to the comments he would make... "I hate my life." "I wish I didn't have a life". "I hate school". "Nobody likes me at school". "I hate my life". He also would start following me everywhere. Won't let me out of his sight because he says he's scared. Clings to be when I drop him at daycare when he was fine before. Although I am not 100% sure it is from the Zyrtec, I am taking him off immediately after reading all the posts about the bad side effects. I was not told to look for mood changes due to the zyrtec so had just chalked it up to him being a child and going through changes. I stopped the zyrtec yesterday so I'm hoping he will revert back to his happy and secure self. F 5 1.5 years
5 mg 1X D
 1  Stop reactions to allergy shots Extreme itchiness that lasted for months after taking the medication. Jittery when not taking the drug. M 42 6 months
 1  allergies The problem starts when you stop taking it. I get very itchy, recently I even got hives and I'm wondering if it's also a side effect from stopping Zyrtec. It goes away when I take another dose. Zyrtec helps w. my asthma & allergies but this uncontrollable itching is enough to drive someone mad! It's insane. I will try to wean myself off slowly. I was able to last year but then went back to using Zyrtec because it's the only thing that works. I will work on weaning off again slowly. I'm taking the liquid version now so I can easily control the dose. Please contact if you have any other tips of getting off this drug! Every single person I know seems to have this effect as well and no one is willing to stop it. Even my friends' kids are on it! Awful. F 30 2 months
10mg 1X D