Answered by Beth Levine on Monday, September 28, 2009
If decongestants get you wired, says Warren Filley, M.D., clinical professor of medicine at the University of Oklahoma Health Sciences Center, give up on them now. "Some people are very susceptible to those nervous, jittery side effects, and it only gets worse as you age," he says. Typical decongestants, like pseudoephedrine, phenylpropanolamine, and phenylephrine, shrink the swollen membranes in the nose. If you can't take them, Dr. Filley has a few alternative suggestions: For a natural remedy, steam may work to loosen secretions. Or try a prescription corticosteroid nasal spray, which often helps to decongest without causing hyperactivity.