Benadryl Dosage

Benadryl is an allergy medication that can be used to treat reactions in the body or on the skin. Due to the properties that affect the sinuses, this drug can also be used to treat the common cold or other non-bacterial sinus irritations. The drug can be administered multiple times a day with some restrictions. Since many manufacturers produce this medication, there are various sizes of tablets or capsules available. The topical version of the drug is usually intended for small areas of the skin, though it can be used in larger doses with a doctor's supervision.

Indications and Usage of Benadryl

Benadryl is typically taken orally to provide relief from allergies or colds. This may include nasal distress, stuffiness, sneezing, headaches, and respiratory distress. The topical version of the drug is available in a gel, cream, and stick, which can be used to provide relief for skin allergies. In extreme cases, Benadryl can be administered intravenously. The oral version is available in a liquid, chewable capsule, quick release tablet, or traditional capsule. The liquid and chewable versions are typically restricted to use by children due to their lower dosage. Similarly, the traditional and fast release capsules are typically reserved for adults due to the high dosage in each serving.

It is safe to take Benadryl without food, but some people tend to have a stomach reaction to the medicine. If you find that Benadryl gives you an upset stomach, try to take your dose with a meal. The doses in different Benadryl products varies greatly from manufacturer to manufacturer, so be sure to read the instructions that come with your product to make sure you have taken the proper amount of the medication.

Criteria and Recommended Benadryl Dosage

Benadryl can be offered to those over 12 years of age in 25 to 50 mg doses every 4 to 6 hours. The topical version can be applied as needed, though it should not be used more than 4 times daily. Patients should also consult a physician if they will be using Benadryl as part of a regular allergy regimen to discuss possible side effects or overdose concerns. A typical tablet of Benadryl will contain 50 mg of the drug and the chewable versions will contain 12.5 mg to make dosing easy to measure.

The topical version of Benadryl should not be combined with any drugs that contain diphenhydramine. This includes oral versions of Benadryl that might be combined with the drug to increase its effectiveness. The drug is not intended for use on large areas of the body, so seek the advice of a doctor if a large portion of your body will require this type of attention. If these conditions arise at any point during use then discontinue taking it and seek medical attention. Your physician will help you determine if there alternative treatments available, or if you have a serious condition.

If you will be taking Benadryl orally for an extended period of time, seek the advice of a physician to determine the proper Benadryl dosage and frequency. Avoid drinking alcohol while the drug is in your system as it can lead to fatigue, dizziness, or other serious side effects.

Patient's Weight (lbs.)






Liquid (12.5 mg dose)

3/4 tsp.

1 tsp.

1.5 tsp.

2 tsp.

Do not use

Chewable Capsules (12.5 mg dose)

Do not use

1 tablet

1.5 tablets

2 tablets

4 tablets

Tablets (25 mg dose)

Do not use

.5 tablets

.5 tablets

1 tablet

2 tablets

Capsules (25 mg dose)

Do not use

Do not use

Do not use

1 capsule

2 capsules

Minimum Effect Dose and Tolerable Upper Intake Level

The minimum effect dose for Benadryl is 12.5 milliliters or milligrams depending on whether or not the liquid or tablet version of the drug is taken. The upper intake level is 50 mg of the medication for adults over 100 pounds or 25 mg for children. If this level is exceeded, medical attention should be sought to ensure that a serious reaction will not occur. The topical version can be used up to 4 times a day with no restriction on where it can be placed on the skin. Under no circumstances should you allow the topical version of the drug to come in contact with any orifices or to be consumed. Seek immediate medical attention if either occurs.

Dose for Children, Seniors, and Patients with Liver or Kidney Problems

Children between 6 and 12 can take Benadryl in doses between 12.5 and 25 mg every four to six hours. Children under two should not be given Benadryl in the oral or topical form. Specific Benadryl dosage will be based on the weight of your child. Those between 20-24 pounds should be limited to 12.5 mg of the liquid version, but should not take the chewable or tablet version of the medication. Those between 25-37 pounds can take 5 doses of the 12.5 mg liquid doses, one chewable dose or half a 25 mg capsule. Children between 38-49 pounds can take 7.5 doses of the 12.5 mg liquid version, 1.5 chewable tablets and 1 capsule. Those between 50-99 pounds can take 10 liquid doses, 4 chewable doses and 1 capsule. Those over 100 pounds can follow the regular adult dosing.

Seniors are not limited in their dosage based on age. All adults can take up to 4 chewable tablets, 2 traditional tablets, and 2 capsules every day. These should not be taken more than every 4 to 6 hours. There are no restrictions on those who have kidney or liver issues, though if you have a serious condition you may want to check with your doctor before you begin a regular regimen.