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What is Rhinocort?

Rhinocort is a steroid nasal spray for the treatment of nasal conditions in adults and children over the age of six. This substance is currently available only in spray format and is intended to help treat various conditions caused by seasonal and year-round allergies, including itching, runny nose, nasal congestion and sneezing. The Rhinocort medication includes an active ingredient called budesonide, which is in the group of glucocorticosteroids. The medicine is effective at dealing with a range of nasal conditions because it contains an anti-inflammatory substance that helps to reduce the sensitivity of the nasal mucosa within the nose. This will help to reduce any pain within your nose caused by inflammation, and may help to reduce symptoms such sneezing, itching, and runny or stuffy nose.

When is Rhinocort used?

Rhinocort nasal spray is designed to treat long- and short-term nasal complaints, including those caused by allergies and seasonal discomfort. Often, a doctor will be required to help diagnose the actual cause of your sneezing or nasal condition before it is safe to self-treat with this medication. If your doctor has prescribed Rhinocort nasal spray, it may be to eliminate symptoms such as a stuffy or running nose, as well as itching and sneezing.

In some cases, Rhinocort is prescribed for patients following a nasal surgery used to remove polyps in the nose, which can cause issues with the inability to smell, stuffy nose, problems breathing, headaches and even snoring. Using Rhinocort nasal spray regularly will ensure that the swelling in the nasal mucosa that causes these polyps decreases. When polyps are removed surgically, Rhinocort can also reduce the risk that they will return, to avoid the need for repeat surgery.

How do you use Rhinocort?

Rhinocort nasal spray is intended for use in the nose only. It should not be taken orally. Usually, your doctor or pharmacist will recommend taking this medicine every day to get the best results. Before you begin using Rhinocort nasal spray, it is a good idea to blow your nose and clear the airways. Shake the container that has been given to you gently before every use, and follow the instructions provided on the medication leaflet. You will need to remove the plastic cap on top of the spray before using it. Remember to close one nostril before administering the medication by pressing it with your finger carefully. Tilt your head forwards slightly and insert the applicator in the other nostril. Press the pump firmly to deliver either one or two doses depending on the prescription given by your doctor. Make sure that you continue to breathe through your nose and keep your mouth closed. You may feel slightly uncomfortable when breathing in through your nose after the first application of Rhinocort nasal spray. Do not point the applicator towards the centre of your nose when spraying – instead, angle it towards the outside of the nostril. This will help to avoid additional discomfort.

After applying Rhinocort nasal spray, tilt your head back slightly for a few seconds to give the medication a chance to spread across the airways in the back of your nose. Once you are ready, follow the same process with your other nostril, and clean the applicator before replacing the plastic cap. It is a good idea to avoid blowing your nose for at least 15 minutes following the application of the medication. Remember that Rhinocort nasal spray will not work instantly. You may begin to notice results within one or two days, but some patients will take up to two weeks to experience the full benefit of the active drug. If you are taking any other medications by nose at the same time as Rhinocort nasal spray, ask your doctor or pharmacist how long you should wait between using each.

What dosages are available?

A typical bottle of Rhinocort nasal spray includes 64 micrograms of the active ingredient budesonide per spray. Your doctor will prescribe how often you should be using this substance. Your dosage will be based on a number of things, including your age, medical condition and your response to treatment. Younger children are often given a smaller dose. To help you remember to take this substance regularly, it is best to use it at the same time each day. You should not increase your dose of this drug if you feel as though it is not working fast enough.

Usually, the dosage for long-term inflammation in the nasal passage, hay fever or allergy is two sprays of Rhinocort nasal spray per day in each nostril for adults and children over the age of six. For nasal polyps, it is recommended to use one spray in each nostril twice a day. If your condition does not improve after following the dosage instructions given by your doctor for two weeks, or if it worsens, speak to your doctor about continuing to use Rhinocort nasal spray.

What are the side effects of Rhinocort?

Severe side effects with Rhinocort nasal spray are very rare. However, as with any medication, there is a possibility that you will experience some effects including nosebleeds, increased sneezing, coughs and general feelings of irritation. Some patients using Rhinocort say that they experience a strange or unpleasant taste or smell. If these issues worsen or persist, speak to your doctor, and do so immediately if you notice any serious side effects, including sores or pain in your nose, and a loss of smell or taste. Symptoms of too much corticosteroid include weight loss, headache, extreme tiredness, swelling in the feet or ankles, vision problems, increased thirst or increased urination.

Over-exposure to corticosteroids can also make it harder for your body to fight off infection. This issue can also occur with substances such as budesonide that are inhaled through the nose. Tell your doctor if you notice signs of an infection such as a sore throat, fever, persistent ear pain, chills or white patches inside of your nose or throat. Be cautious regarding potential allergic reactions when taking this drug. Signs of an allergic reaction include trouble breathing, dizziness, wheezing, swelling of the tongue, face or throat, itching and rashes.

When should you not use Rhinocort?

It is important not to use Rhinocort nasal spray if you have any history of being allergic to budesonide. Make sure that you also tell your doctor about any other allergies that you may have, and if you have any history of eye problems, recent nose problems or infections. Avoid contact with anyone who may have an infection when you are taking this drug, such as chickenpox, measles or flu as corticosteroids can make you more susceptible to infection. Additionally, make sure that you tell your doctor if you have any exposure to extra physical stress caused by an injury or serious illness.

There is a slight risk that this medication may slow down the growth process in children in certain rare cases. This usually only happens when Rhinocort nasal spray is used for a long period of time, and the effect on final height in an adult is unknown. You should talk to your doctor if you are using Rhinocort nasal spray when you are pregnant. In some cases, infants born to mothers who have had long-term exposure to corticosteroids may have low levels of the corticosteroid hormone. Make sure that you speak to your doctor if you notice symptoms in your newborn such as diarrhoea, weakness, vomiting, persistent nausea or discomfort. It is unknown at this time whether Rhinocort passes into breast milk. However, many similar drugs do pass into breast milk, so it may be safer to avoid nursing your child when taking this medication.

Does Rhinocort interact with any other medications?

It is important to always tell your doctor about any medications that you are already taking before you begin using Rhinocort nasal spray. This includes medicines that you have purchased over the counter and drugs that you have on a repeat prescription, as well as any herbal remedies or supplements that you are taking along with this drug.

Do not change the dosage of any medication, including Rhinocort nasal spray, without the approval of your doctor. Usually, it is not a good idea to take Rhinocort nasal spray with other medications that contain similar corticosteroids. Exposure to other steroids such as prednisone could increase your risk of suffering from dangerous side effects. Information on the drugs that may interact with Rhinocort nasal spray is currently limited. However, most doctors recommend that you should not take this drug with desmopressin.

Where can you buy Rhinocort?

You can purchase Rhinocort nasal spray at any pharmacy or medical clinic. You can also instruct us to arrange for this medication to be available for you to pick up at a registered pharmacy. We can also offer a consultation with a registered doctor to ensure that this substance is suitable for you. Remember that you should not use Rhinocort nasal spray without seeking the advice of a medical professional first. It is important to read the patient leaflet before using Rhinocort nasal spray.

Can you get Rhinocort without a prescription?

Rhinocort nasal spray is available without a prescription. However, it is advisable to get the approval of a doctor before you begin using this substance, as it will not interact well with all patients. Keep in mind that Rhinocort nasal spray needs to be used regularly each day for you to get the full effect. Do not use Rhinocort nasal spray for any nose problem without speaking to a doctor first.

References:, 2019, Online, Rhinocort Side Effects, [accessed 7 August 2010], available on:

John P. Cunha, DO, FACOEP, Online, 2019, Rhinocort Aqua Side Effects Center, [accessed 7 August 2010], available on:

Mayo Clinic, 2019, Online, Budesonide-Nasal-Route, [accessed 7 August 2010], available on:

Reviewed by:

Dr Imran Malik, General practitioner Registrationnumber: GMC: 4741365 Last checked: 27-06-2023 | Still valid

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