Benadryl (diphenhydramine) is an antihistamine.
Definition of an antihistamine: When your body is exposed to allergens, it releases histamines. Histamines attach to the cells in your body and cause them to swell and leak fluid. This can cause itching, sneezing, runny nose and watery eyes. Antihistamines prevent histamines from attaching to your cells and causing symptoms.
While most of you know Benadryl is great for symptoms of the common cold, like sneezing and runny nose, I'll share a few more uses with you:
1. runny nose, sneezing, watery eyes (hay fever, cold)
2. drainage down back of throat (itchy throat)
3. itchy eyes or nose
4. itching due to bug bites, chicken pox, poison ivy etc
5. allergic reaction to medication, food etc
8. dizziness due to motion sickness
9. relaxation or insomnia
Benadryl does have a few more uses: Parkinson's Disease and to counter act side effects of some anti-psychotic drugs.
The main side effect of Benadryl (and benefit sometimes) is the drowsiness it can cause. Always use caution with medications and consult your health professional.