Individuals should not take more than 4 doses of DayQuil within 24 hours. Taking more than the recommended dosage can lead to adverse health effects, such as liver damage.

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DayQuil can help those dealing with a cold or flu continue their daily activities.

This article will explore what DayQuil does, how it works, and the types and dosages. It also looks at possible side effects, precautions, and drug interactions and answers some frequently asked questions.

DayQuil helps treat cold and flu symptoms without causing drowsiness. The symptoms it treats may include:

This medication works quickly to provide daytime relief for colds and flu. Temporary relief from these conditions lasts for about 4 hours.

Although DayQuil can reduce cold and flu symptoms, it does not cure either condition. The common cold and the flu tend to go away independently over time. A cold may last 7–10 days, while the flu may last for over 2 weeks.

In most cases, cold and flu symptoms improve with at-home care, such as drinking plenty of fluids, resting, and eating a nutritious diet.

However, if symptoms persist or worsen, contact a doctor to learn more about other treatment options.

Each dose of DayQuil contains active ingredients to combat flu and cold symptoms. These ingredients include:

  • acetaminophen
  • dextromethorphan
  • phenylephrine

Acetaminophen is one of the most common over-the-counter (OTC) medications. This medication treats fever and pain ranging from mild to moderate. Some countries refer to this drug as paracetamol.

The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approved dextromethorphan as a cough suppressant in 1958. Since then, dextromethorphan has been a common OTC choice for treating coughs.

Finally, phenylephrine is a medication that can help treat nasal congestion. DayQuil combines these three drugs to target multiple symptoms of cold and flu.

DayQuil comes in several different types and delivery options.

The most common type of DayQuil is DayQuil Cold & Flu LiquiCaps. These liquid-filled capsules deliver DayQuil medication rapidly in an easy-to-swallow pill.

DayQuil LiquiCaps also come in SEVERE Cold & Flu options. DayQuil Severe contains the same ingredients as DayQuil. However, it also contains guaifenesin, an expectorant that loosens and thins mucus.

DayQuil is also available in liquid form, which may be an easier option for people who have difficulty swallowing pills. In addition to the products listed above, the DayQuil line also includes the following:

DayQuil’s effectiveness will vary between individuals and their illness type. A person should speak with a doctor to determine which type of DayQuil may be most appropriate.

Dosage of the pill form

The dose for DayQuil depends on which type of DayQuil an individual uses. Two pills make up a single dose of DayQuil Cold & Flu LiquiCaps. This dose contains:

  • 650 milligrams (mg) of acetaminophen
  • 20 mg of dextromethorphan
  • 10 mg of phenylephrine

Dosage of the liquid form

The liquid form of this medication contains the same amount of each ingredient, but instead of 2 pills, a dose of liquid DayQuil is 30 milliliters (ml).

Dosage of the SEVERE form

A dose of DayQuil SEVERE Cold & Flu contains:

  • 650 mg of acetaminophen
  • 20 mg of dextromethorphan
  • 10 mg of phenylephrine
  • 400 mg of guaifenesin

Before taking any DayQuil, a person should read the instructions carefully. While the dosage may differ between products, it is important to take only the recommended medication.

How long does the medication take to work?

Typically, it takes about 30 minutes to feel the effects of DayQuil.

How long does the medication last?

DayQuil can treat cold and flu symptoms for around 4 hours. On the other hand, DayQuil Cough products treat cough symptoms for up to 8 hours.

The side effects of DayQuil are generally mild and may include:

Using more than the recommended DayQuil can also lead to liver damage in rare cases.

Children younger than 2 years of age should not take DayQuil products. Research has shown that serious side effects can occur in this population.

Certain medical conditions can also increase the chance of adverse side effects after taking DayQuil. These may include:

Individuals with secondary health conditions should speak with a doctor before taking DayQuil. A medical professional can also recommend treatment alternatives for infants and toddlers dealing with colds or flu.

Learn more about alternative congestion relief for children.

Consuming other substances or medications can increase the risk of adverse side effects when using DayQuil. For example, consuming alcohol with DayQuil products can hinder safe driving and increase the chance of taking too much.

Combining alcohol with DayQuil can also lead to the following:

Research has shown that phenylephrine can increase blood pressure. As a result, individuals with high blood pressure should avoid taking this medication.

However, DayQuil offers an alternative medication that does not contain phenylephrine, which may be suitable for people with high blood pressure.

Finally, individuals taking monoamine oxidase inhibitors (MAOIs) should not take DayQuil products. The FDA indicates that MAOIs interact negatively with DayQuil and can lead to serious health consequences.

Before starting any new medication, a person should consult a doctor or pharmacist to learn about possible interactions.

Below are some frequently asked questions (FAQs).

Can you take it with ibuprofen?

DayQuil products do not contain ibuprofen, so doctors consider it safe to take ibuprofen while taking DayQuil.

DayQuil .vs DayQuil SEVERE and the dosage?

DayQuil SEVERE contains an added ingredient, 400 mg of guaifenesin. This ingredient helps to thin and loosen mucus, which makes it easier to expel from the body.

DayQuil. vs. NyQuil and the dosage?

NyQuil contains 650 mg of acetaminophen and 30 mg of dextromethorphan.

Unlike DayQuil, NyQuil products also contain 12.5 mg of doxylamine succinate. This antihistamine causes sleepiness, making it a more suitable option for nighttime medication.

DayQuil products help treat the symptoms of cough and flu. They reduce coughing, fever, pain, and congestion.

The DayQuil product line includes several medications, such as capsules and liquid products. These can help treat mild to severe symptoms during the day or night.

Most people who take DayQuil do not experience serious side effects. However, consulting a doctor before taking this medication is crucial to ensure that DayQuil is the right option, as it may interact with some medications or affect people with certain conditions.