Reviewed By: Pramod Kerkar, MD, FFARCSI

Afrin must not be used for the routine treatment of nasal allergies. Both Afrin (oxymetazoline) and other OTC nasal decongestant sprays are effective for treating nasal congestion associated with cold. However, they should not be used for more than three days or they will in turn cause some side effects or some serious medical issues. One of the major side effects of Afrin nasal spray is that anyone that uses Afrin or other OTC nasal decongestants may become addicted to them.

Side Effects of Afrin Nasal Spray in Treating Allergies

Side Effects of Afrin Nasal Spray in Treating Allergies

Although Afrin is not an addictive medicine like narcotic medicines, there were several cases where a person was addicted to Afrin making Afrin dependency a side effect of Afrin nasal spray. People who use Afrin for longer period will experience one big irony. That irony is that their nasal congestion will become worse and worse and it may even become much worse than their primary nasal congestion. This happens because the efficacy of Afrin drops after three days and so afrin is not effective and not safe in treating allergies, it must be used only in emergency cases that too not for more than three days.

What is Afrin Dependency?

Afrin dependence is known in the medical circles as rhinitis medicamentosa. Usually, a help from a medical professional is needed to overcome Afrin dependence. There were also cases when a person has weaned of Afrin by itself and without any help from any medical professional. However, these persons claim that they did not wean of Afrin but that they did it with the help of certain medications. Some medications that can help a person to stop being dependent on Afrin include certain nasal steroid sprays and oral corticosteroids.

Helping Someone with Afrin Dependency

If you know someone that seems to be dependent on Afrin or even addicted to it, consider telling that person that he/she should pay a visit to a medical doctor that will consider what the best thing to do regarding Afrin dependency is. Using Afrin for a prolonged period can indeed cause more harm than good and that is what every person should know.

Also Read:

Pramod Kerkar

Written, Edited or Reviewed By:

, MD,FFARCSI

Pain Assist Inc.

Last Modified On: July 5, 2017

This article does not provide medical advice. See disclaimer

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