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Does Dayquil Keep You Awake?

DayQuil is an over-the-counter medication that helps to alleviate multiple cold and flu symptoms.

This over-the-counter medication is formulated with active ingredients that work individually to help you manage common cold symptoms like a runny nose, sore throat, congestion, headache, and fever.

If you are on DayQuil and wondering whether DayQuil will keep you awake when you take it, read on to find out.

Does DayQuil keep you awake?

Does DayQuil keep you awake
Will Dayquil Keep You Awake?

One of the most common concerns that people taking DayQuil have is whether or not it will keep them up at night. Luckily this is not the case.

DayQuil does not keep you awake as it doesn’t contain stimulants, such as caffeine, that could hinder your ability to fall asleep. Nor does it contain antihistamines that can make you feel drowsy. As a result, it is a viable alternative to flu medications with stimulants, and you don’t have to worry about drowsiness or staying awake.

The primary ingredients in DayQuil are Acetaminophen (pain relief), Dextromethorphan (cough suppressant), and Phenylephrine (nasal decongestant).

These ingredients may induce drowsiness in some people, although the effect fades away quickly.

The old version also contained pseudoephedrine (a decongestant), but this was removed due to the regulation that products containing it must be kept behind counters where their sale would be appropriately documented and reported.

The formula in DayQuil does not include stimulants (like caffeine); therefore, it will not keep you awake after taking it, regardless of the time of day you take it. There are some exceptions, though; if you suffer an adverse reaction or allergic reaction to Dextromethorphan or Acetaminophen, you may stay awake for a while.

DayQuil is a non-drowsy medication formulated for use during the day. Unlike Nyquil, it does not have the ingredient Doxylamine, which is an antihistamine. Antihistamines have a drowsy effect that manifests minutes after taking them.

Although DayQuil works best during the day, it can be taken at night, too, without affecting your sleep pattern. Unless you suffer adverse effects from the ingredients, you will fall asleep as usual. DayQuil is an excellent alternative to pain relief medications with stimulants (that may keep you awake) or antihistamines (that may make you drowsy.)

What does DayQuil do?

What does DayQuil do
Does Dayquil Keep You Up?

DayQuil is a relief medication with active ingredients such as Acetaminophen, Dextromethorphan, and Phenylephrine. These temporarily treat the symptoms of common cold and flu such as fever, nasal congestion, cough, aches, headache, and sore throat.

What is in DayQuil?

What is in DayQuil

DayQuil has Acetaminophen, Dextromethorphan, and Phenylephrine which are the active ingredients that help relieve symptoms of the common cold and flu. Each ingredient has a specific purpose in the effectiveness of DayQuil.

Acetaminophen is an active ingredient that reduces fever and relieves pain associated with the common cold and flu. It works by changing how the body senses pain and responds to it. It also helps to regulate the body temperature managing the shivers and temperature fluctuations associated with fever.

Dextromethorphan is responsible for suppressing the urge to cough. works by suppressing the cough reflex in the brain.

Phenylephrine is a nasal decongestant that relieves congestion in the nose by reducing the swelling of the blood vessels in your nasal passage. It clears a stuffy nose and sinuses by tightening the blood vessels responsible for fluid leakage.

What types of DayQuil are available?

DayQuil comes in three common types, liquid capsules, oral caplets, and liquid form, which can all be used to help provide relief for common symptoms associated with a cold and flu.

All three types have the same formulation:

  • 325 mg of Acetaminophen (pain reliever/fever reducer)
  • 10 mg of Dextromethorphan (cough suppressant)
  • 5 mg of Phenylephrine (nasal decongestant)

The dosage, however, varies depending on age.

DayQuil SEVERE contains an extra ingredient (guaifenesin), an expectorant used to clear mucus and phlegm from the chest.

Over-the-counter DayQuil HBP is a medication for people with high blood pressure. Cold and flu symptoms such as cough, headache, minor aches and pains, fever, and sore throat are treated with this drug. It is, however, decongestant free.

What is the difference between DayQuil and NyQuil?

The main difference between DayQuil and Nyquil is in the formula. Both DayQuil and NyQuil Cold and Flu Relief tablets contain Acetaminophen (a pain reliever) and Dextromethorphan (a cough suppressant). DayQuil is a non-drowsy formula with a decongesting ingredient, Phenylephrine, while Nyquil has a sedating antihistamine that causes drowsiness, helping you sleep better at night.

Pseudoephedrine (a decongestant) was removed from the formula due to the ingredient used to make crystal methamphetamine. Removing this from the current formulation means that NyQuil is ineffective as a decongestant. You can take DayQuil or NyQuil SEVERE, which contains 10mg of phenylephrine HCI if you require relief from a blocked or stuffy nose.

Does DayQuil make you sleepy?

Does DayQuil make you sleepy
Can Dayquil Make You Sleepy?

DayQuil should not make you sleepy. It is generally a non-drowsy drug, but depending on how your body reacts to the active ingredients, some people may feel drowsy for a short time.

NyQuil contains an antihistamine, which could make you sleepy and is therefore not recommended to take during the day if you need to be awake.

Can I take DayQuil at night?

You might be wondering if you take Dayquil at night will it keep you awake? Luckily drinking Dayquil at night should not keep you up, but it might not be the best choice if you’re looking for something to help you fall asleep.

You can take DayQuil at night since it does not have active stimulants that would otherwise keep you awake. Its effects on sleep are minimal; therefore, you can take it at night without worrying about staying up longer than you should.

If you’re looking for a medication to take at night to alleviate cold or flu symptoms and help you sleep, you might want to consider NyQuil or another night-time cold medicine. These typically contain antihistamines that can make you drowsy and help you sleep.

It’s important to note that these medications only help manage the symptoms of a cold or flu, they don’t actually cure the illness or speed up recovery.

Does DayQuil have stimulants?

Dayquil is composed of several different active ingredients:

  • Acetaminophen: This is a pain reliever and fever reducer.
  • Dextromethorphan: This is a cough suppressant.
  • Phenylephrine: This is a decongestant.

Of these, phenylephrine can potentially act as a mild stimulant, as it is designed to constrict blood vessels in your nasal passages to reduce swelling and congestion. However, it doesn’t act as a stimulant in the same sense as caffeine or amphetamines.

It’s important to note that although phenylephrine might have some stimulant-like effects, it doesn’t typically cause the sort of alertness or wakefulness associated with traditional stimulants. It can, however, cause side effects like restlessness or insomnia in some people.

If you experience any negative side effects please stop taking it and contact your healthcare provider.

Does DayQuil have caffeine?

DayQuil does not have caffeine or other stimulants that negatively affects how fast you fall asleep. Its main ingredients are acetaminophen, dextromethorphan, and Phenylephrine, which are free from caffeine.

Does DayQuil give you energy?

DayQuil does not give you energy, however, as it relieves cold and flu symptoms, you will temporarily feel better and might therefore feel like you have more energy. This is especially true if you have a blocked nose, as phenylephrine relieves congestion in the nose, allowing you to breathe better.

It is important to note that according to Healthline, Dextromethorphan, an ingredient in DayQuil, is frequently abused, leading to a sense of euphoria and even hallucinations at high doses. This dangerous form of misuse is known as “robo-tripping” or “skittling” and can have fatal consequences. It is essential to consume DayQuil at a safe dose.

Can you take melatonin with DayQuil?

DayQuil and melatonin do not typically interact in a harmful way, so they can usually be taken together. However, every individual’s response to medication is unique. While DayQuil is designed to alleviate cold and flu symptoms, and melatonin is typically used as a sleep aid, which can potentially cause drowsiness. This combined effect may leave you feeling more tired or drowsy than expected.

Also, keep in mind that while melatonin is a natural hormone produced by your body, it’s still possible to take too much and experience negative side effects. High doses can lead to dizziness, headaches, nausea, irritability, or difficulty concentrating.

Before combining these two or any other medications, you should consult your healthcare provider or pharmacist, as they can provide advice tailored to your specific situation. This is especially important if you have other health conditions or are taking other medications, as there could be unanticipated interactions.

How To Fall Asleep When Sick

How To Fall Asleep When Sick

Adequate sleep at night when sick is essential for recovery; your body needs rest to reverse the effects of the disease you are suffering from. But sometimes, it may not be natural to fall asleep and stay asleep.

I’ve listed some natural sleep aids below that you can try to improve your quality of sleep.

1. Elevate your head

One of the things you can do is prop your head up when sleeping. This position will help your nasal passage drain better while reducing pressure in your head. Use a pillow at the back of your neck to support your head up and help clear your nasal passages.

2. Stay away from stimulants

Avoid taking medications that will affect your sleeping pattern. Stay away from drugs that have stimulants such as caffeine, even in small doses. If you have to take such meds, limit them to about four hours before bedtime.

3. Hot Shower

Take a relaxing hot shower just before bedtime. You want to relax your muscles, and if you are suffering from a common cold, the steam in the shower can reduce congestion in your upper respiratory tract, help you breathe better in readiness for sleep, and improve your sleep quality.

4. Humidifier

If you have trouble sleeping due to blocked nostrils, use a humidifier in your bedroom. The additional humidity in your room will help prevent stuffy and congested airways, contributing to better sleep quality.

5. Hot Beverage

Chamomile tea can come in handy to help you relax and slow down your brain to fall asleep better. Add lemon and honey to your tea to soothe your throat and warm your airways. Take a cup of this tea an hour before bedtime to experience its full effect.

6. Cold remedies

Taking common cold remedies like Vitamin C, Zinc and Echinacea can also help speed up your recovery.

7. Gargle

If you have a severe common cold, blow your nose just before you lay down to sleep. You might also want to gargle with lukewarm saline water to soothe your throat. This, together with a comfortable room setup, should help you turn in quicker.

8. Go to be early

Lastly, go to bed earlier than usual to help your body slow down and prepare for sleep. Make sure you eat earlier, a few hours before bed, take your medication on time, and make your space comfortable to trigger rest and sleep.

How long does it take for DayQuil to work

How long does it take for DayQuil to work?

How long DayQuil takes to work depends on several factors, but you should generally experience some relief after 30 minutes of taking it. The effect can be quicker or slower depending on the dosage and how severe your symptoms are.

How often can I take DayQuil?

You can take DayQuil every 4 to 6 hours with or without food or as directed by your doctor. It is advisable to follow your physician’s directive as dosage varies with age and other factors that the doctor can identify during treatment.

Adults & Children 12 years & over should not exceed 4 doses per 24 hrs. People with certain medical conditions like asthma, diabetes, and heart disease should not take this medicine.

Oral Liquid:

  • Adults: 30mL (2 TBSP) every 4 hours
  • Children 6 to under 12 years: 15mL (1 TBSP) every 4 hours
  • Children 4 to 6 years: Ask a doctor
  • Children under 4 years: Do not use
Best for colds & flu

Vicks DayQuil, Liquid Cough, Cold & Flu Relief, Sore Throat, Fever, & Congestion Relief, Non-Drowsy, 12 FL OZ

DayQuil Cold & Flu

Temporarily relieves common cold and flu symptoms:

  • nasal congestion
  • cough due to minor throat and bronchial irritation
  • sore throat
  • headache
  • minor aches and pains
  • and fever



  • Do not exceed 4 doses per 24 hrs Adults & Children 12 years & over.
  • Adults and children 12 years and over: 2 LiquiCaps with water every 4 hours.
  • Children 4 to under 12 years: Ask a doctor.
  • Children under 4 years: Do not use.
  • To ensure correct dosing, read each DayQuil or NyQuil product label carefully.
  • Other Information: Do not refrigerate. Store at room temperature.
Best Caps for flu

Vicks DayQuil LiquiCaps, Cough, Cold & Flu Relief, Sore Throat, Fever, & Congestion Relief, Non- Drowsy, 48 LiquiCaps

DayQuil Liquid Caps

Temporarily relieves common cold and flu symptoms:

  • nasal congestion
  • cough due to minor throat and bronchial irritation
  • sore throat
  • headache
  • minor aches and pains
  • and fever
  • Non-drowsy


Oral Caplets:

  • Do not exceed 8 caplets per 24 hrs.
  • Adults & children 12 yrs & over: 2 caplets with water every 4 hrs.
  • Children 4 to under 12 yrs: ask a doctor.
  • Children under 4 yrs: do not use.
  • NyQuil: Take only as directed.
Best for Day & Night

Vicks DayQuil & NyQuil SEVERE with Vicks VapoCOOL, Cough, Cold & Flu Relief, Sore Throat, Fever, & Congestion Relief, Day & Night Relief, 48 Caplets (32 DayQuil, 16 NyQuil)

DayQuil Caplets

Cough, cold and flu relief:

  • 31 DayQuil
  • 16 NyQuil
  • cough
  • fever
  • sore throat
  • minor aches & pains
  • headache
  • sneezing
  • runny nose
  • nasal congestion
  • sinus pressure
  • with menthol – Vapocool


How long does DayQuil last?

DayQuil lasts approximately four hours after intake. The effects of DayQuil can start within 30 minutes of intake and stay as long as five hours. The period DayQuil lasts depends on the severity of your symptoms and the dosage of the drug.

How long does DayQuil stay in your system?

How long DayQuil stays in your system depends on the specific DayQuil formulation you take, which varies based on the ingredients. Formulas with Acetaminophen last in your system between 1 and 4 hours, while those with Dextromethorphan last in the system for 3 to 6 hours. Those with Phenylephrine last in your system between 2 to 3 hours.

How many DayQuil pills can I take?

DayQuils usual dosage is two pills per dose, taken between 4 to 6 hours. It is advisable not to exceed four doses within 24 hours; that is, eight pills per day with a spacing of 4 to 6 hours. This dosage is only applicable for adults and changes for children under 12, so check in with your doctor for the correct dosage.

Common side effects of DayQuil include liver damage if more than 8 caplets are taken in 24hrs if taken with other drugs containing Acetaminophen, and for those with alcoholism.

Other effects can include an allergic reaction to Acetaminophen.

Does DayQuil have alcohol in it?

DayQuil does not have alcohol. It is formulated with active ingredients, namely; Acetaminophen, Dextromethorphan, and Phenylephrine, which help relieve the symptoms of the common cold or flu.

NyQuil Liquid contains 10 percent alcohol. NyQuil LiquiCaps do not contain alcohol. A non-alcoholic version of NyQuil Cold & Flu Nighttime Relief Liquid is also available.

Can you drink alcohol when you take DayQuil?

You should not drink alcoholic beverages when you take DayQuil. The manufacturer advises against using alcohol when on DayQuil, especially if you drink regularly and heavily. Acetaminophen, an active ingredient in DayQuil, when mixed with alcohol, brings about serious side effects such as severe liver damage, drowsiness, and nausea.

How long after taking DayQuil can you drink alcohol?

You can drink alcoholic drinks 4 to 6 hours after taking DayQuil. This is adequate time for the active ingredients to work and get eliminated from the system. Therefore, the alcohol you take after will not interact with the drug; but this has to be after the last dose and not in between doses.

DayQuil Cold & Flu is an excellent flu medication that can offer instant relief from cold and flu symptoms. Although DayQuil and NyQuil are not considered sleep medications, they can assist in getting good quality sleep by temporarily treating the symptoms of common cold and flu such as fever, nasal congestion, cough, aches, headache, and sore throat.

When in doubt about whether you should take any medication, you should consult your health care provider for professional advice.