Did you know your cough or cold medicine could lead to a DUI?

On Behalf of | Apr 28, 2022 | DUI Defense |

When you started feeling unwell, you quickly decided to take a cold medicine. You took a nondrowsy formula, rushed out the door and didn’t think twice about it.

That’s problematic, though, because if the medication causes you to feel dizzy, disoriented or tired, you could make mistakes behind the wheel that lead to a DUI. Cold medicine can contain medications that have a negative impact on cognition and that make it unsafe for you to drive.

Your cold medication could cause dangerous side effects

While your cold medicine might help you stop coughing and loosen up your sinuses, it’s also possible that it could make your tired or cause poor coordination. Dizziness, as well as a lack of concentration, are also common side effects caused by cold medications.

What ingredients cause negative side effects in cold medicines?

Every ingredient in a cold medication has the potential to cause side effects. Some, like diphenhydramine, are more likely to lead to drowsiness, while others, like the expectorant guaifenesin, can lead to dizziness, headaches, nausea or stomach upset.

It’s important for you to know the side effects that a medication could have before you take it. Read the ingredients and check the side effects listed on the bottle. If this is a nighttime medication, it will be more likely to include ingredients to make you tired and rest, whereas a daytime medication may be more likely to lead to jitters or dizziness.

Can you be found guilty of a DUI for taking cough medicine?

It’s possible that you could be charged with a DUI and be convicted if you knew the risks and still chose to drive while impaired by cough or cold medicine. That’s why it’s necessary for you to test medications before you decide to drive when using them. Try to take them over a weekend or when you can get a ride to work, so you can see how you’re impacted and if you’ll suffer any side effects. If you do choose to drive and get stopped, you will need to work on a strong defense against the charges.