Nyquil, ZZZQUIL and WEED-Bad News?

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    ZZZQUIL And WEED- Nyquil, and Weed-Should They Be Combined?

    Both Nyquil and ZZZQuil are made by Vick, which is owned by Proctor and Gamble and Helen of Troy, limited.

    Vicks specializes in OTC medications for the cold, flu, sleeping problems, nasal congestion, coughs, sore throats, allergy relief, and more.

    I am not a Doctor; as a result, In this article, I will not discuss whether or not ZZZquil helps you get to sleep quicker or if Nyquil will help you with your flu and cold symptoms. I will, though, examine if it is wise to combine weed and ZZZQUIL or weed and Nyquil.

    First, I will briefly explain both medicines.

    ZZZQUIL and NYQUIL Fact Sheets


    ZzzQuil, Nighttime Sleep Aid Liquid, 50 mg Diphenhydramine HCl, No.1 Sleep-Aid Brand, Warming Berry Flavor, Non-Habit Forming, 12 FL OZ

    ZZZYQUIL is marketed as a non-habit-forming, sleep medication that is to be used for occasional sleeping problems, and not for a chronic sleep disorder like insomnia.

    ZZZQUIL Ingredients

    Diphenhydramine HC is ZZZQUIL’s only active ingredient. ( Diphenhydramine-HC is also the main ingredient of the over-the-counter allergy medicine Benadryl) Dipenhydramine is what gives ZZZQUIL its sedative effect. ZZZQUIL also has several inactive ingredients that were added for looks and flavoring. Some of the inactive ingredients are food coloring, citric acid, and high fructose corn syrup.

    Diphenhydramine HC Side Effects

    First of all, every prescription and OTC medicine has potential side effects. For example, taking aspirin can potentially cause pulmonary edema. And even certain foods can cause an adverse reaction with certain drugs. So, Just because a drug can cause specific reactions does not mean that it is faulty.

    According to WebMD, the non-lethal side effects of Diphenhydramine HC are drowsiness, dizziness, upset stomach, constipation, vision problems, dry mouth, dry throat, and a dry nose.

    Some of the extremely rare and potentially deadly reactions to Diphenhydramine HC are restlessness, confusion, urination problems, and tachycardia, (when your heart beats too fast) and seizures.


    Vicks NyQuil Cold & Flu Nighttime Relief 12 oz (Pack of 6)

    The Nyquil product line, whose main competitor is Robitussin, is designed to help control flu, and cold symptoms like a cough, sore throat, congestion, headaches, etc. And, as you likely guessed, Nyquil also acts as a sedative.

    Nyquil’s Ingredients

    Unlike ZZZQUIL, Nyquil has several active ingredients that are listed below.

    Acetaminophen (AKA “Tylenol”)

    Ues: A pain reliever that provides relief from minor aches and pains, fever, headaches, etc.

    Main Side Effects: Nausea, stomach pain, loss of appetite, and high doses can cause liver damage

    Dextromethorphan HBr (“DXM”)

    Uses: Is a cough suppressant

    Main Side Effects: Dizziness, sleepiness, stomach problems, restlessness

    Doxylamine Succinate

    Uses: It is an antihistamine used to promote sleep, and also provide allergy symptom relief

    Main Side Effects: Drowsiness

    Phenylephrine HCl (Not Always included)

    Uses: It is a decongestant designed to help with symptoms like a runny nose.

    Main Side Effects: Dizziness, headaches, GI problems like an upset stomach

    Nyquil Addiction

    Prolonged use of Nyquil can result in addiction accompanied by withdrawal symptoms.

    No Pseudoephedrine-Unlike, Sudafed, Nyquil no longer contains Pseudoephedrine, which is used for cooking meth. This has resulted in many states requireing any drugs containing this igredients to be held behind the counter. This can reslt in it Nyquil not being as effective as Sudafed. However, Pseudoephedrine, which constricts blood vessels also can potentially cause erectile dysfunction.

    How Is Nyquil Different From ZZZquil?

    ZZZQUIL, differs from its more famous cousin NYQUIL, in that it is ONLY designed to help you get to sleep quicker and not meant to be cold medicine, pain reliever, and so forth.

    Nyquil, though, is designed to help with common cold and flu symptoms. (I.E. Sore throat, Cough Suppressant, Pain Relief, etc.)


    cannabis is a schedule 1 drug, which means there have been very few medical studies concerning weed.

    As a result, there is limited information concerning ZZZQUIL and Nyquil’s main ingredients’ interaction with weed.

    Weed and ZZZQUIL’s Dangers

    Some of the information, primarily from addiction recovery websites, concerning cannabis and Diphenhydramine HC (ZZZQUIL’s active ingredient) is hysteria.

    For example, Diphenhydramine HC has caused Tachycardia, and weed use has been known to also cause this issue. An addiction recovery website, without any evidence though stated that combining the two could result in an increased risk of Tachycardia. However, they provide no evidence or studies to back this claim up.

    Nyquil, ZZZQUIL, and OTC Medication

    For Nyquil, the best resource that I can find on weed and Nyquil’s interactions were from Healthline. This article did not specifically mention Nyquil. It did however mention cold and flu, OTC medications.

    Nyquil is the most well-known, OTC cold and flu medicine in the US. So, It would not be a brash assumption that Nyquil is applicable for their advice.

    Healthline did not outright state that smoking weed while on OTC cold medication was a mistake. It did mention that weed and Nyquil might enhance some of the common side effects that are associated with weed. I.E. Sedation.

    What was noteworthy, that this article stated that regular cannabis users should not stop smoking weed when taking OTC cold medicine. Instead, they should just not smoke any more than they normally would smoke.

    Enhances Effects

    The most reliable source concerning the dangers of combining Nyquil and ZZZyquill with weed came from Drugs.com and Healthline.

    Both of these articles stated that the active ingredients of Nyquil and ZZZquill combined with smoking weed can increase the side effects that are common with both Nyquil or ZZZquills and cannabis. For example, dizziness, drowsiness, and the ability to concentrate will able be accelerated when you are smoking pot and taking Nyquil.

    One of these effects, drowsiness, is what the users of ZZZQuil and Nyquil are wanting to achieve, which is sleep. And some of the other effects are not an issue when you are sleeping. For example, concentration is not a desired trait to have when you want to get some shut-eye.

    Final Thoughts

    From what I have read, the recommended dose of ZZZquil combined with weed should not be dangerous. Depending upon what that you smoke, it also can potentially make you go to sleep quicker.

    A realistic danger though is that combining ZZZquil or Nyquil and pot could be dangerous if you have to get up in an emergency during the night. However, you’d have that same issue with alcohol use, opioid pain killers, or if you were taking other types of sleeping medicines like Ambien.

    My personal views on combining these two make me ask this question: Why?

    ZZZQUIL or Nyquil, when used sparingly, should be enough to help you get to sleep. So, adding cannabis is unnecessary and merely wasting good weed. If you have a problem sleeping, save you money and your weed, as there is no use using both.


    What about Dayquil and Weed?


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

    Dayquil (Made by Vick’s) is an OTC medication made to treat common cold and flu symptoms. Unlike Nyquil, its ingredients are not designed to make you sleepy. Because of this, I felt that it was necessary for me to evaluate Dayquill separately from both Nyquil and ZZZQuil.


    • Dayquil
    • Dayquil Severe-Same as Dayquil. However, it contains acetaminophen. (Designed to help with phlegm and mucus in your chest)


    The effects of these drugs are described above.


    Dextromethorphan (“DXM”)-It gives Dayquil its cough syrup effect.


    What Does Dayquil Treat?

    • Nasal Congestion
    • Sore Throat
    • Fever
    • Headache
    • Minors Aches and Pains
    • General Symptoms Associated With Cold and Flu-I.E. Stuffy Nose,


    Because of acetaminophen, Dayquil has mostly the same dangers of an overdose as Nyquil. Additionally, it can worsen high blood pressure symptoms.

    Is It Safe To Mix Dayquil and Weed?

    I was not able to find any direct info regarding if Dayquil and cannabis are a safe combination. So, I used Drugs.com, Cannabis Drug Interactions resource, which is a database of cannabis‘s potential interactions that could occur with medications. Per this database, weed, and Dayquil can potentially make DXM’s side effects of sleepiness, inability to concentrate, and also confusion worse. Also the elderly may experience enhanced impairment in judgment, thinking, and coordination.



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