Over the last decade, general medication use has only slightly increased however, the use of antihistamines alongside allergy and cold-and-flu drugs has risen by 3 million (tablets per year).


So why has this certain type of drug spiked in use and what potential implications come with it? Dr Richard Kidd believes it could possibly be due to its multitude of uses as antihistamines are being taken for reasons far beyond the common allergy or cold. They are also available over the counter at chemists, making them accessible to anyone.

Professional insight

Dr Kidd noted some other reasons for people taking these types of drugs were motion sickness and sleeping difficulties. It is when unchecked self-medication without proper awareness of implication takes over that these types of drugs become dangerous.

Dr Kidd adds antihistamines were not “completely safe” for long-term use, because they can trigger neurological side effects that may or may not disappear when the individual stops taking the drug.

Lack of education

It seems that like most things that this dangerous increase is due to lack of education. People ought to seek the proper means to heal whatever ailments they may have. Talk to your doctor or naturopath or other health practitioner and see what the best course of action – and more importantly – prevention is.

By reaching for the quick, cheaper and easier solution, you will only find wrong answers and potentially cause severe damage to yourself in the long run. And for people with a chronic condition that seems to be managing with over-the-counter medication, you miss out on vital information by not speaking to your healthcare professional and seeking out a better, more effective option.

So let’s all start the conversation and see where it takes us.