Meclozine

Easy-to-read medicine information about meclozine – what it is, how to take it safely and possible side effects.

Type of medicine Also called
  • Is used to treat nausea (feeling sick) or vomiting (being sick)
  • Belongs to groups of medicines called antihistamines
  • Sea Legs®

What is meclozine?

Meclozine is used for nausea (feeling sick) or vomiting (being sick) caused by motion sickness (whether travelling by car, plane, boat or bus). Meclozine works by blocking the chemical histamine, in the brain, that is known to trigger nausea and vomiting.

In New Zealand, meclozine is available as tablets that can be purchased from a pharmacy without a prescription.  

Dose

  • The usual dose of meclozine is 2 tablets once a day.
  • Some people may need higher doses, up to 4 tablets once a day.
  • To prevent motion sickness, meclozine is best taken the night before you travel or 1 hour before travel.
  • You can wait to take meclozine when the feeling of sickness starts, but it does not work as well.   

How to take meclozine

  • Take meclozine with a glass of water.
  • You can take meclozine with or without food. 
  • If you forget your dose, take it as soon as you remember that day. But, if it is nearly time for your next dose, just take the next dose at the right time. Do not take double the dose.    

Precautions – before taking meclozine

  • Do you have problems with your liver?
  • Have you ever had problems with your bowel, like bowel obstruction?
  • Do you have prostate problems or problems passing urine (wee)?
  • Do you have epilepsy?
  • Do you have glaucoma (increased pressure in your eye)?
  • Are you pregnant or breastfeeding?
  • Are you taking or using any other medicines? This includes any medicines being taken which are available to buy without a prescription, as well as herbal and complementary medicines.

If so, it’s important that you tell your doctor or pharmacist before you start meclozine. Sometimes a medicine isn’t suitable for a person with certain conditions, or it can only be used with extra care.

Side effects

Like all medicines, meclozine can cause side effects, although not everyone gets them. Often side effects go away once your body gets used to the new medicine.

Drowsiness and dizziness

Meclozine can make some people feel drowsy, sleepy or tired. It can also make you feel dizzy and can cause blurred vision. If it affects you in this way, do not drive or operate machinery. Do not drink alcohol - it can make these effects worse.  

Other side effects

Side effects What should I do?
Dry mouth 
  • This is common when taking meclozine
  • Try sucking on ice chips, or lollies or drink small sips of water.
  • Read more about dry mouth
Dizziness, drowsiness, blurred vision, feeling faint
  • Do not drive or operate machinery
  • Do not drink alcohol
  • Take care when getting out of bed so you don’t fall over
  • Talk to your doctor if it remains a problem.
Difficulty peeing (urine retention)
  • Talk to your doctor or ring Health Line 0800 611 116
Constipation
  • Increase the amount of fibre in your diet by eating lots of fruit, vegetables, brown bread and bran-based breakfast cereals.
  • Drink plenty of water.
  • Talk to your doctor if it remains a problem.
  • Read more about constipation
Signs of an allergic reaction such as rash and swelling of mouth and lips
  • Talk to your doctor immediately or ring Health Line 0800 611 116

Interactions

Meclozine may interact with some medicines and herbal supplements, so check with your doctor or pharmacist before starting meclozine or before starting any new medicines.

Learn more

The following link has more information on meclozine.

Meclozine New Zealand Formulary Patient Information

References

  1. Meclozine New Zealand Formulary
Credits: Sandra Ponen, Pharmacist. Reviewed By: Angela Lambie, Pharmacist, Auckland Last reviewed: 24 Apr 2019