Jump To


Generic name: benzonatate
Drug class: Antitussives

Brand names

In the U.S.

  • Tessalon Perles
  • Zonatuss

Available Dosage Forms:

  • Capsule, Liquid Filled
  • Capsule

Therapeutic Class: Antitussive

Uses for benzonatate


Benzonatate helps to ease coughs that are caused by influenza or colds (flu). It should not be used to treat a chronic cough that is caused by smoke, asthma Emphysema. It is also used in cases of an unusually significant amount of mucus or phlegm in the cough.

Benzonatate helps to reduce coughing by directly affecting the lungs and breathing passages. It also acts on the centre of cough in the brain¹.

The drug is only available on prescription from your physician.

Before using benzonatate

When you decide to take medication, the potential risks of taking the medication should be considered against the benefits it can bring. It is a choice you and your physician will take. In the case of benzonatate, these must be taken into consideration:


Inform your doctor whether you’ve had any allergic or unusual reaction to benzonatate, or any other medication. Inform your health care specialist if you suffer from any other allergies, like dyes, foods or preservatives. You may also be allergic to animals. For non-prescription medications, look over the label or ingredient list carefully.


The right studies haven’t been conducted on the relation of age and the effects of benzonatate on children younger than 10 years old. The safety and effectiveness of benzonatate have not been proven.


The right studies haven’t been conducted on the relation of age and the effects of benzonatate in the elderly population. The safety and effectiveness of benzonatate are not known.


There are no studies that are sufficient of women that can determine the risks to babies when using this medication while breastfeeding. Consider the benefits and the risks that could be associated with using this medication during nursing.

Interactions with medications

While certain medications should not be combined in any way, however, there are instances where two medicines can be taken together, even if there is a chance of interaction. In these instances, the doctor may decide to adjust the dose or take other precautions if required. Discuss with your healthcare professional that you’re having any additional prescriptions or non-prescription (over-the-counter ) medication.

Interactions with alcohol, tobacco, or food

Certain medications shouldn’t be used during or in conjunction with having food items or eating specific kinds of food, as interactions can happen. The use of tobacco or alcohol together with certain medications can result in interactions. Discuss with your physician the interaction of your medication in conjunction with alcohol, food or tobacco.

Other medical issues

The presence of any other medical conditions can affect the effectiveness of benzonatate. It is important to inform your physician if you suffer from any other medical conditions including:

  • Phlegm or coughing mucus is common. the benzonatate reduces coughing, it can make it challenging to get rid of the mucus which can build up in the airways and lungs when suffering from certain illnesses.

Properly using the benzonatate

Use benzonatate as prescribed by your physician. Don’t take more of it, don’t take it more frequently and do not use it for a longer period of time than the prescription your doctor gave you. This could increase the likelihood of having side negative effects.

Take the capsules in whole. Don’t crush, break or chew on them. When the capsules are in contact with your mouth, they could cause the throat and mouth to feel dull (loss of sensation) and even choking could occur.

If tingling or numbness of the tongue, mouth, face, or throat occurs then do not eat or drink until the symptoms go away. Consult your physician right immediately if the symptoms persist or get worse.


The dosage of benzonatate is likely to differ depending on the patient. Follow the instructions of your physician or the instructions in the prescription. The following information is the doses that are typical of benzonatate. If you have a different dose don’t alter it unless your doctor advises you to change it.

The amount of medicine you are taking is determined by how strong the medication is. In addition, the number of doses you will take every day, the interval between doses and the amount of time you are taking the medicine will depend on the medical condition for which you’re taking the medication.

  • For oral dosage form (capsules):
    • To treat cough:
      • Adults and children 10 years old or older – 100 milligrams (mg) three times per day. Don’t take more than 200 mg at a time as well as over 600 mg in a day.
      • For children who are younger than 10 years old – use is not advised.

Missed dose

If you are missing the dosage of benzonatate take the missed dose off and resume the regular dose schedule. Don’t double doses.


Place the medicine in a tightly sealed container that is kept at room temperature and away from moisture, heat, and sunlight. Be sure to keep the medicine from the medicine from freezing.

Avoid keeping outdated medicines or medications that are no longer needed.

Discuss with your doctor to tell you how to dispose of any medication you don’t take.

Place the capsules in a child-proof container and keep them away from any reach by children.

Toss any medicine that is not being used by mixing it with coffee grounds or kitty litter. Then put it in a sealed bag, empty container, or container.


Be aware of the precautions when using benzonatate.

It is vital to ensure that your doctor checks your progress when either you or your kid is taking benzonatate. This allows your doctor to determine whether the medication is working correctly and determine whether you should continue to use the medication.

If your cough does not improve after seven days, or if there is an elevated temperature, itchy skin, or a persistent headache that is accompanied by cough, talk to your physician. These signs could mean you may have other medical issues.

Benzonatate overdoses can happen when young children (younger than the age of 10 old aged) between 15 and 20 mins after having taken benzonatate by accident. For children younger than two years old even ingesting one or two capsules has caused the overdose. Some signs and symptoms include convulsions (seizures) and inability to concentrate, restlessness and trembling in the arms, legs and hands or feet. If your child has taken the drug accidentally, call the poison centre (1-800-222-1222) and take them to the hospital as soon as you can.

Benzonatate side effects

In addition to its beneficial effects, medicines can result in unwanted negative effects. Although not all adverse effects can occur, if they occur, they could require medical attention.

Talk to your doctor immediately in the event that any of these negative side effects occur:


  • Confusion
  • difficulty breathing
  • trouble speaking
  • seeing things that aren’t present
  • breath shortness
  • chest pain
  • wheezing

Seek emergency assistance immediately If any of the following signs of an overdose are present:

Signs of an overdose

  • Change in consciousness
  • convulsions (seizures)
  • loss of consciousness
  • There is no pulse or blood pressure
  • insanity
  • shaking in your hands, arms, legs or feet
  • The heart stops beating
  • shakes of feet or hands
  • unconsciousness

There are some side effects that can occur but they usually do not require medical care. These side effects can be eliminated after treatment, as your body adjusts. Additionally, your doctor could be able to inform you how to prevent or minimize the effects of these adverse effects. Consult your doctor in the event that any of these symptoms persist or become troubling or if there are any concerns about these:

More rare or uncommon

Other adverse side effects that are not listed can also occur in certain patients. If you observe any other side effects, you should consult with your physician.

Consult your physician to seek medical advice on possible side effects. You can report any adverse reactions to the FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088.


Additional details

Always consult your physician to make sure the information presented on this site is appropriate to your particular situation.

Read Next Article

PHP Code Snippets Powered By : XYZScripts.com