What is Hydroxyzine

Hydroxyzine is an antihistamine that is used as a treatment for anxiety and allergic reaction. It is also used for reducing the symptoms of alcohol withdrawal. It can create a sleepy effect and thus it is also effective in treating insomnia. It works by preventing the effects of a substance called histamine, which is produced naturally by the body. Histamine can produce symptoms of itching or hives on the skin. It is also suspected to modify the secretion of the hormone Serotonin. Despite similarities with other OTC medications, Hydroxyzine requires a prescription and is not available as an OTC. 

It was first produced by Union Chimique Belge in 1956 and was accepted for sale by Pfizer in the United States later that year. In 2018, it was the 78th most commonly prescribed medication in the United States, with over a million prescriptions.

Colorful pills with different shapes.

The Dangers of Hydroxyzine and Alcohol Interaction

Hydroxyzine is sold under the following brand name Vistaril and comes in different dosages.


  • 5 mg
  • 25 mg
  • 50 mg


  • 25 mg
  • 50 mg
  • 100 mg


  • 10 mg/5mL

Injectable solution

  • 25 mg/5mL
  • 50 mg/5m

Precautions before taking Hydroxyzine Hydrochloride

Do not take hydroxyzine if you are pregnant as it can lead to birth defects especially in the first and second trimester. The medicine can also cause heart issues in certain individuals. In 2015, the European Medicines Agency (EMA) announced a small but definite risk of QT prolongation associated with the use of hydroxyzine. This side effect is more likely to occur in people with pre-existing cardiac disease, or with the use of other medicines known to prolong the QT interval.


Related:The Dangers and Side Effects of Mixing Mobic and Alcohol

Hydroxyzine for sleep, anxiety, and alcohol

Hydroxyzine may interact with several other medications so notify your health care, expert of other prescription, before using Hydroxyzine. This medicine may create a sensation of sleepiness or drowsiness. Do not drive partake in any activity that could be dangerous until you know how this medicine affects you.


Hydroxyzine side effects and interactions

Hydroxyzine is unlikely to be addictive and is not listed as a controlled substance by the FDA. Nonetheless, the medicine should be treated with caution and taken as prescribed by your doctor. hydroxyzine is generally a short-term option for the treatment of anxiety and acts to relieve symptoms while other long-term medications begin to take effect in the body. hydroxyzine can lead to several unwanted side effects including:

  • chest pain or discomfort
  • cough
  • difficulty with swallowing
  • dizziness
  • fainting
  • fast heartbeat
  • hives, itching, or skin rash
  • irregular or slow heart rate
  • puffiness or swelling of the eyelids or around the eyes, face, lips, or tongue
  • shortness of breath
  • tightness in the chest
  • unusual tiredness or weakness

Although not very common, some cases of overdose associated with hydroxyzine have been reported. hydroxyzine overdose can lead to :

  • reduced awareness or responsiveness
  • drowsiness
  • nausea
  • seizures and possibly coma
  • severe sleepiness and 
  • vomiting

Hydroxyzine was responsible for 9 deaths in Kentucky in 2016. It was also responsible for 5,902 ED visits in 2010.


Hydroxyzine Withdrawal and Recovery

A Hydroxyzine overdose is very dangerous and requires medical aid. If you need help with the effects of medications or drugs, have a look at our website. The dangers of medication abuse and addiction are constantly on the rise. People are often burdened by mental and psychological issues and are thus prone to abusing any substances that might relieve their pains. Yet these substances can create bigger health issues and may even lead to death.