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Night Nurse Summary
|Type of medicine||Sedating antihistamine, cough suppressant and pain killer.|
|Works by||Causes drowsiness, dries up a runny nose, eases dry, tickly coughs and eases aches and pains.|
|Available as||Capsules, Oral suspension|
|Active ingredient||Promethazine Hydrochloride, Dextromethorphan Hydrobromide, Paracetamol|
|Effective within||20 minutes|
|Pack size||10 capsules, 160 ml bottle|
|Manufacturer||GlaxoSmithKline Consumer Healthcare|
|Use with alcohol||Avoid|
We stock 2 different variants of Night Nurse
Night Nurse Information
What is Night Nurse and what does Night Nurse do?
Night Nurse liquid and capsules can be taken by adults and children over the age of 16 years to provide overnight relief from symptoms of cold and flu.
Night Nurse is specially formulated using 3 active ingredients to reduce your temperature, soothe your sore throat, suppress your cough and dry up that runny nose while aiding a restful night sleep.
Night Nurse can be used for up to 3 days. If you are still suffering from cold and flu symptoms that are keeping you awake after this period you should speak to a doctor or pharmacist for advice.
What is Night Nurse used for?
Night Nurse is proven to provide night-time relief for symptoms of colds and flu which include:
- A temperature
- Muscle aches and pains
- Runny nose
- Sore throat
- Dry tickly cough
Does Night Nurse work?
Taking Night Nurse before bed, when you are suffering from a cold or flu, has shown to be effective in helping you get a more peaceful night's sleep.
Night Nurse contains 3 active ingredients which means that Night Nurse works in 3 ways.
- Paracetamol: Night Nurse contains a dose of paracetamol which works as a painkiller to reduce any headaches or aches and pains and also reduces a high temperature.
- Dextromethorphan hydrobromide: Dextromethorphan is a cough suppressant, providing relief from dry or tickly coughs.
- Promethazine hydrochloride: Promethazine is an antihistamine which not only helps to dry up a runny nose but it also makes you drowsy helping you get to sleep more quickly and helps you get a more rested nights sleep.
How long does Night Nurse take to work?
For the best results when using Night Nurse you should try to take your one-off dose 20 minutes before bed. Night Nurse takes around half an hour to take effect, so this gives you time to go about your night-time routine before getting a good night's sleep.
Night Nurse and alcohol
You should not drink alcohol when taking Night Nurse liquid or capsules as alcohol consumption may increase your chances of experiencing unwanted side effects.
Night Nurse liquid also contains a small amount of alcohol which should be considered if you suffer from alcoholism.
Night Nurse and pregnancy
It is not recommended that you take Night Nurse during pregnancy or while breastfeeding. If you are struggling with cold and flu symptoms that are keeping you awake at night you should speak to a doctor or pharmacist for advice.
Please be aware that Night Nurse can cause fake results when taking urine sample pregnancy tests.
Can you take Night Nurse with antibiotics?
Yes, Night Nurse can be taken at the same time as antibiotics. It is, however, important to note that you should not take Night Nurse if you are currently suffering from a chest infection. If you are taking antibiotics to treat a chest infection you should therefore not take Night Nurse at this time.
Night Nurse and other medicines
If you are currently taking any other medication or have been addicted to any prescription, alcohol or illegal drugs you should speak with your doctor or pharmacist before taking Night Nurse.
You should not take Night Nurse if you take or have taken antidepressants or antipsychotic medication in the last 2 weeks as Night Nurse may interact with these medicines causing unwanted side effects.
Please be aware that Night Nurse contains a dose of paracetamol and an antihistamine. You should therefore not take Night Nurse with other medicines containing paracetamol or any other antihistamines. If you think you have taken too much of either of these medicines you should speak to a doctor straight away.
Night Nurse alternatives
Night Nurse is just one of many cold and flu treatments. For more options available online at the Independent Pharmacy why not take a look at our Cold & Flu page.
Night Nurse for kids
Night Nurse should not be given to children under the age of 16 years. Most symptoms of colds and flu in children can be controlled simply using painkillers such as paracetamol and ibuprofen.
For more advice on what you can do at home to help relieve cold and flu symptoms in children, take a look at the NHS guidance.
- https://www.drugs.com/dextromethorphan.html#:~:text=Dextromethorphan is a cough suppressant,counter and prescription combination medications.
- Night Nurse Liquid, Patient Information Leaflet: https://www.medicines.org.uk/emc/product/354/pil
- Night Nurse Capsules, Patient Information Leaflet: https://www.medicines.org.uk/emc/product/355/smpc
Night Nurse dosage
Night Nurse Liquid: Fill the measuring cup to the 20 ml mark and take one 20 ml dose at bedtime only.
Night Nurse Capsules: Take 2 capsules at bedtime only with a drink of water.
You must not take Night Nurse if you have already taken 4 doses (4000 mg) of any paracetamol-containing product in any 24 hours.
Night Nurse is for oral use only and should only be taken by children and adults 16 years and over.
Night Nurse - how long before bed?
You should only take Night Nurse as a one-off dose 20 minutes before you go to bed as it contains ingredients designed to make you drowsy. Do not take Night Nurse for more than 3 days as it may cause addiction.
Night Nurse ingredients
Night Nurse Liquid:
Each 20ml of Night Nurse contains the active ingredients: Paracetamol 1000 mg, Promethazine Hydrochloride 20 mg, Dextromethorphan Hydrobromide 15 mg.
Other ingredients: Liquid glucose, ethanol (alcohol), sodium cyclamate, sodium citrate, ascorbic acid.
Night Nurse Capsules:
Each capsule contains the active ingredients: Paracetamol 500mg, Promethazine Hydrochloride 10mg and Dextromethorphan Hydrobromide 7.5mg.
Other ingredients: Lactose monohydrate, gelatin and colours patent blue V (E 131), quinoline yellow (E 104), titanium dioxide (E 171) and printing ink (containing shellac, iron oxide black (E 172), propylene glycol (E 1520) and ammonium hydroxide (E 527).
Night Nurse side effects
Before using Night Nurse, please make sure you have read the Patient Information Leaflet thoroughly to ensure you are familiar with all the reported side effects.
Night Nurse, like other medicines, may cause some people to experience unwanted side effects.
If you are worried about side effects or they do not go away once you stop taking Night Nurse you should speak to a doctor or pharmacist for advice.
If you experience a severe allergic reaction when taking Night Nurse you should seek immediate medical attention from your nearest Emergency Department.
The most commonly reported side effects associated with Night Nurse include:
- Blurred vision
- Difficulty concentrating
- Dry mouth
Night Nurse withdrawal - Is Night Nurse addictive?
In rare circumstances, Night Nurse can cause addiction and therefore you should not take Night Nurse for more than 3 days.
If you notice any of the following signs, you may have become addicted to Night Nurse:
- You need or want to take Night Nurse for longer than 3 days.
- You feel you need to take more than the recommended dose of Night Nurse.
- You are using Night Nurse for reasons other than to treat cold and flu symptoms.
- When you stop taking Night Nurse you start to feel unwell. Taking it makes you feel better.
If you notice any of the following signs after you stop taking Night Nurse, you may be experiencing withdrawal symptoms:
- Difficulty sleeping
- Irritability, agitation or anxiety
- Heart palpitations
- Feeling or being sick, diarrhoea
- Shaking, shivering or sweating
If you are experiencing any of the signs of, or are worried about addiction or withdrawal you should speak to a doctor or pharmacist straight away for advice.
Night Nurse warnings
- Do not drink alcohol while taking Night Nurse
- Do not use any other medicines containing paracetamol within 4 hours of Night Nurse and do not use any medicine containing antihistamines.
- Speak to a doctor or pharmacist before taking Night Nurse if you have recently been or are currently taking any other medication.
- Night Nurse should not be given to the elderly who suffer from confusion.
Night Nurse and driving - does Night Nurse make you drowsy?
Night Nurse contains ingredients that are used to make you feel drowsy to aid better sleep during a cold or flu.
A side effect of Night Nurse is that it can continue to make some people feel drowsy the next morning after the bedtime dose. It is therefore crucial that you do not drive while taking Night Nurse until you know how it affects you.
Night Nurse addiction
Night Nurse can cause some people to become addicted and therefore you should not take over the recommended dose or take for longer than 3 days. For more information on addiction go to the Side Effects section on this page.
Night Nurse reviews
Night Nurse FAQs
Relief from cold and flu symptoms at night, including tickly, unproductive coughs, runny nose, sinus pain, fever, headache, aches and pains and sore throats.
Night Nurse Liquid may cause drowsiness and should not be taken during the day. If this medication makes you drowsy, do not drive or operate machinery.
Avoid drinking alcohol with Night Nurse Liquid.
You should not take Night Nurse Liquid if you have already taken four doses of a paracetamol-containing medication during the day, as you can easily exceed the maximum recommended daily dose. Since many over-the-counter painkillers and cold and flu remedies contain paracetamol, it is important to check the ingredients of any medications before taking them with Night Nurse Liquid, or ask your pharmacist.
An overdose of paracetamol is dangerous and can cause serious liver and kidney damage. Never exceed the recommended dose of Night Nurse Liquid. In the event of an overdose, seek immediate medical advice, even if you feel well, since delayed liver damage is a risk.
Alcohol increases the risk of liver damage in the event of a paracetamol overdose. Heavy drinkers and people with alcoholic liver disease are at a higher risk for hazards from paracetamol overdose.
children under 12 years of age
people with severe liver or kidney disease
people with chronic bronchitis
people with bronchiectasis
people at risk for severe breathing problems (respiratory failure)
people who have taken the anti-Parkinson's medications selegiline and rasagiline in the last 14 days or the antidepressants phenelzine, tranylcypromine, isocarboxazid or moclobemide
people allergic to any of Night Nurse Liquid’s ingredients
If you have any of the following symptoms, do not take Night Nurse Liquid and consult your doctor: phlegm that is green, rusty brown, yellow, blood-stained or foul smelling; short breath, wheezing or breathing difficulties; chest pain; sudden weight loss; recurrent night-time cough; pain and swelling in the calf; or a long-term, persistent cough.
people with liver or kidney problems
people with heart disease
people who have difficulty completely emptying their bladder, for example men with an enlarged prostate gland
people with epilepsy
people with glaucoma
people who suffer from asthma
people with diabetes; Night Nurse Liquid contains 12.8mg glucose in every 20ml dose
people on sodium-controlled diets; Night Nurse Liquid contains 37mg sodium in every 20ml dose
people suffering from alcoholism; Night Nurse Liquid contains alcohol
Night Nurse Liquid is not usually recommended for women who are pregnant. Although paracetamol is generally considered safe during pregnancy, the safety of dextromethorphan and promethazine has not been established. Seek further advice from your doctor, pharmacist or midwife.
Mothers who are breastfeeding should avoid taking Night Nurse Liquid. Although paracetamol is generally considered safe during breastfeeding, it is not known if dextromethorphan passes into breast milk. Promethazine does enter breast milk and it may cause sedation, irritability or excitement in a new-born. Ask your doctor, pharmacist or midwife for further advice.
Medications and their possible side effects affect individual people in different ways. The following are some of the known side effects associated with Night Nurse Liquid. Just because a side effect is listed here, does not mean that you will experience it or any effect:
- drowsiness, see above
- feeling disorientated
- dry mouth
- blurred vision
- gastrointestinal disturbances such as diarrhoea, constipation, nausea, vomiting or abdominal pain
- Skin rash
- Difficulty passing urine
Talk to your doctor, nurse or pharmacist if you’d like additional information about Night Nurse Liquid’s possible side effects. If you think you have experienced a side effect, you can report it using the yellow card website.
If you already take other medications, including herbal and over-the-counter, you should check with your pharmacist before taking Night Nurse Liquid, to ensure that the combination is safe.
Do not take Night Nurse Liquid if you have already taken four doses of a paracetamol-containing medication during the day, as you may easily exceed the maximum recommended daily dosage. Many over-the-counter cold and flu remedies contain paracetamol, so be sure to check their ingredients before taking them with Night Nurse Liquid. Ask your pharmacist for further advice.
Night Nurse Liquid may cause drowsiness that can worsen if you take it with any of the following:
- benzodiazepines, e.g. temazepam, diazepam
- sedating antihistamines, e.g. chlorphenamine, diphenhydramine, triprolidine, often found in other non-prescription cough and cold or hay fever remedies
- sleeping tablets, e.g. zopiclone
- strong opioid painkillers, e.g. codeine, dihydrocodeine, morphine
- tricyclic antidepressants, e.g. amitriptyline
Side effects such as dry mouth, blurred vision, constipation or difficulty passing urine may occur if you take Night Nurse Liquid with any of the following medications:
- anticholinergic medications for urinary incontinence, e.g. oxybutynin, flavoxate, tolterodine, propiverine, trospium
- anticholinergic medications for Parkinson's disease, e.g. trihexyphenidyl, orphenadrine, procyclidine
- antipsychotic medicationss, e.g. chlorpromazine, clozapine
- antispasmodics, e.g. atropine, hyoscine
- certain antisickness medications, e.g. prochlorperazine, meclozine, cyclizine
- muscle relaxants, e.g. baclofen
- tricyclic or related antidepressants, e.g. amitriptyline, maprotiline.
Cholestyramine reduces the absorption of paracetamol in the gut. It should not be taken within an hour of Night Nurse Liquid, otherwise the paracetamol will be less effective.
Night Nurse Liquid 160ml has been formulated to provide complete night-time relief from the major symptoms of cold and flu, helping you get a restful night’s sleep so that your body can regain its strength and heal naturally.