Can You Take Benadryl With Prednisone?

In our latest question and answer, the pharmacist discusses whether or not diphenhydramine (brand names Sominex, Benadryl) can be taken with the steroid prednisone.


Can you take diphenhydramine (Benadryl, Sominex) while taking prednisone?

Asked by Gem On Feb 03, 2018

Answered by
Medical Content Reviewed By PharmacistAnswers Staff

On Feb 05, 2018

Sominex is a brand name sleep aide that contains diphenhydramine. Diphenhydramine is also the active ingredient in Benadryl and ZzzQuil. Diphenhydramine is safe to take with prednisone, an oral corticosteroid. There is no listed or reported interaction between the two medications.

Prednisone is well known to cause insomnia and related side effects including increased energy, anxiety and excitation, in as little as one dose. As such, many individuals look to over the counter (OTC) medications to help with sleep in the evening. Fortunately, as mentioned above, diphenhydramine is safe to use with prednisone and there are no safety issues taking both together.

Additional Information

Diphenhydramine is a commonly used ingredients in many over the counter products including Sominex, ZzzQuil and Benadryl. It is classified as a first generation antihistamine and is very effective for the treatment of allergy symptoms and allergic reactions. As with most first generation antihistamines, it can cause pronounced sedation which is why it is used in over the counter sleep aides. 

Prednisone is a corticosteroid that is used for a variety of indications. It it often utilized in short courses for the treatment of allergic reactions and for bronchitis. Even with short term use, it is well known to cause insomnia and anxiety. It is also known to cause GI upset. Taking it with food is recommended and over the counter sleep aides, such as Benadryl, can be utilized to combat insomnia.

About the Pharmacist

Dr. Brian Staiger Pharm.D

Dr. Brian Staiger is a licensed pharmacist in New York State and the founder of He graduated from the University At Buffalo with a Doctor of Pharmacy degree in 2010. He has been featured in numerous publications including the Huffington Post as well as a variety of health and pharmacy-related blogs. Please feel free to reach out to him directly if you have any inquiries or want to connect! He's answered thousands of medication and pharmacy-related questions and he's ready to answer yours! Office: 716-389-3076

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