Astelin (Azelastine)

Astelin (Azelastine)

Astelin

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Active ingredient: Azelastine

Dosage: 10ml

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What is Astelin (Azelastine)?

Astelin, also known by its generic name Azelastine, is a type of medication used to help manage symptoms of allergies, like a runny nose, sneezing, and itchy eyes. It comes as a nasal spray, which means you spray it directly into your nose, or as eye drops. Astelin belongs to a group of medicines called antihistamines. These work by blocking a substance in your body called histamine, which gets released during an allergic reaction and causes many of the symptoms you associate with allergies. This spray is helpful for people who need quick relief from these symptoms because it starts working in just a few minutes, and the effects can last for up to 12 hours. This makes it a convenient option for managing allergy symptoms.

Frequently Asked Questions about Astelin Azelastine

What is Astelin used for?

Astelin is primarily used to treat symptoms caused by allergies. If you have seasonal allergies, which might come around when there’s pollen in the air, or if you’re allergic to things like dust or pet dander, this nasal spray can help. When you spray it into your nose, it can relieve symptoms like:

  • Sneezing
  • Runny or itchy nose
  • Nasal congestion

Basically, it helps calm down the irritation in your nose caused by allergies. It is useful because it acts quickly, providing relief from these uncomfortable symptoms and helping you feel better during allergy seasons or in environments where allergens are present.

Off-label Astelin use

Astelin, while primarily used for treating allergy symptoms, also has some off-label uses. Here are a few off-label uses:

  1. Non-allergic Rhinitis: This is a condition where the inside of the nose becomes inflamed but not because of an allergic reaction. Symptoms can be similar to those of allergies, like a runny nose or sneezing, and this nasal spray can help manage these.
  2. Vasomotor Rhinitis: In this condition, nasal symptoms arise due to irregularities in the nervous system control of blood vessels in the nose, rather than allergies. Symptoms like nasal congestion and runny nose can be relieved by this spray.

How does Astelin work?

Astelin works by targeting and blocking histamine, a natural chemical in your body that plays a big role in allergic reactions. When you come into contact with something you’re allergic to—like pollen, dust, or pet dander—your body releases histamine. This release can cause symptoms like a runny nose, sneezing, and itchy eyes.

When you spray Astelin into your nose, it acts directly in the nasal passages to block the action of histamine. This reduces the allergy symptoms, helping you feel less itchy and sneezy and more comfortable. The effects are fairly quick, providing relief soon after use, which makes it a handy treatment for those sudden allergy flare-ups.

Is Astelin the same as Azelastine?

Astelin and Azelastine refer to the same medication. Astelin is the brand name, while Azelastine is the generic name. They both contain the same active ingredient and work in the same way to treat allergy symptoms.

Sometimes, doctors and pharmacists might use the name Azelastine when they’re talking about the generic version of the drug, which is usually less expensive than the brand-name version. Both versions help relieve symptoms like sneezing, a runny nose, and itchy eyes caused by allergies. Whether you use branded or a generic version, you can expect similar results in managing your allergy symptoms.

How long does Astelin take to work?

Astelin starts to work quite quickly after you use it. Typically, you might begin to feel relief from your allergy symptoms within about 15 minutes after spraying it into your nose. This makes this nasal spray a good choice if you’re looking for fast relief from sudden allergy attacks like sneezing or a runny nose. The effects can last for up to 12 hours, so it can help keep your symptoms at bay throughout the day or night with just a couple of doses.

Is Azelastine (Astelin) a steroid?

Azelastine (Astelin) is not a steroid. It is an antihistamine, which means it works by blocking histamine, a substance your body releases during an allergic reaction. Unlike steroids, which reduce inflammation by broadly suppressing the immune response, antihistamines like Azelastine specifically target and block the actions of histamine, helping to relieve symptoms like sneezing, itching, and runny nose without the broader effects of steroids.

What are the side effects of Azelastine Astelin?

Azelastine (Astelin) is generally safe, but like any medication, it can have side effects. Here are some of the common side effects people might experience when using this nasal spray:

  1. Bitter taste in the mouth – Some people notice a bitter taste after using the nasal spray. This is one of the more common side effects.
  2. Drowsiness or sleepiness – Azelastine can make some people feel sleepy, so it’s a good idea to be cautious about driving or operating heavy machinery until you know how it affects you.
  3. Headache – Some users might experience headaches after taking Astelin.
  4. Nasal irritation – The nasal spray can cause irritation inside the nose, leading to a burning sensation or discomfort.
  5. Nosebleeds – Occasionally, people might have nosebleeds after using the nasal spray.

What are the special considerations of Azelastine?

When using Astelin, there are a few special considerations to keep in mind to ensure it’s safe and effective for you:

  1. Drowsiness: This medicine can cause drowsiness in some people. It’s important to be aware of how it affects you before doing activities that require alertness, like driving or operating machinery.
  2. Alcohol and Other Sedatives: Combining Azelastine with alcohol or other medications that can make you sleepy (like sedatives or some pain medications) can increase the drowsiness effect. It’s wise to avoid alcohol and be cautious about using other sedatives while taking this medication.
  3. Pregnancy and Nursing: If you are pregnant or planning to become pregnant, talk to your doctor before using this medical tool. The same goes for nursing mothers, as it’s not entirely clear if it passes into breast milk.
  4. Allergy to Ingredients: Before starting the drug, ensure you’re not allergic to any of its ingredients. Your healthcare provider can help you understand the ingredients list.
  5. Long-term Use: If you need to use Astelin over a long period, keep in touch with your doctor. They may want to check on your symptoms and make sure the medication is still effective and safe for continued use.
  6. Other Medical Conditions: If you have kidney problems or certain infections, especially in the nose, inform your doctor. These conditions may affect how you should use Azelastine.

What should you not take with Azelastine?

When using Azelastine (Astelin), there are certain things you should avoid to prevent unwanted side effects or decreased effectiveness of the medication:

  1. Alcohol: Drinking alcohol can increase the drowsiness the drug’s effect. It’s best to avoid alcohol to stay alert and safe.
  2. CNS Depressants: These are medications that slow down the nervous system and can include drugs like sleeping pills, sedatives, or certain pain medications (such as opioids). Using these drugs with this nasal spray can lead to increased drowsiness or sleepiness.
  3. Other Antihistamines: Taking other antihistamines, either over-the-counter or prescription, alongside Azelastine may increase the risk of excessive drowsiness and other side effects.
  4. Certain Herbal Products: Some herbal products that cause drowsiness, like valerian root or kava, should be used cautiously if you are taking this spray, as they could enhance the sedative effect.

Where to get more info about Astelin?

Get more info here.

Disclaimer

This document does not include all information about this medication and should not replace the medication guide, a consultation with a pharmacist, or advice from your healthcare provider. For the complete medication guide or additional questions, please contact your pharmacist.

By Emily A. Rosten, MD
Medically Reviewed by Dr Bell
Last Updated: June 23, 2024

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