Benzydamine for sore mouth/throat (Difflam)

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Benzydamine eases painful conditions of the mouth or throat.

It is available as a mouth rinse and as a mouth spray.

You can use benzydamine for up to seven days, but do not continue to use it for longer than this except on the advice of a doctor or dentist.

Type of medicineAnti-inflammatory painkiller
Used forPainful mouth and throat conditions such as mouth ulcers and sore throat
Also calledDifflam®
Available asMouth rinse (mouthwash) or spray

Benzydamine is an anti-inflammatory and painkilling medicine. It reduces pain and discomfort associated with sore throat or mouth conditions such as ulcers and sore throat. It is available as a mouthwash which you can gargle with, or as a spray which can be directed towards the sore areas of your mouth.

Benzydamine mouthwash and spray are available on a prescription from a doctor or dentist. You can also buy them at a pharmacy, without a prescription.

Some medicines are not suitable for people with certain conditions, and sometimes a medicine may only be used if extra care is taken. For these reasons, before you start using benzydamine it is important that your doctor, dentist or pharmacist knows:

  • If you are pregnant or breast-feeding. This is because, while you are expecting or feeding a baby, you should only take medicines on the recommendation of a doctor.
  • If you have ever had an allergic reaction to a medicine.
  • If you are taking any other medicines. This includes any medicines you are taking which are available to buy without a prescription, such as herbal and complementary medicines.
  • Before you start the treatment, read the manufacturer's printed information leaflet from the pack. It will give you more information about benzydamine and will provide you with a full list of any side-effects which you may experience from using it.
  • If you are using benzydamine oral rinse (mouthwash), use 15 ml as a mouthwash every 1½-3 hours. The cap of the bottle can be used as a measure. After you have gargled with the liquid for about 20-30 seconds, spit it out - try not to swallow benzydamine. If you find the mouthwash causes some stinging, you can dilute the liquid with an equal amount of water before you use it. This oral rinse is not suitable for children under 13 years of age to use.
  • If you are using benzydamine spray, use 4-8 sprays on to the sore area every 1½-3 hours. This is the dose for adults. If you are giving benzydamine to your child, check the label carefully to make sure you are using the correct number of sprays for the age of your child.

How to use benzydamine spray

  1. Hold the bottle upright.
  2. Lift the nozzle of the spray away from the container until it is horizontal.
  3. If it is the first time you have used the spray, point the nozzle away from you and press down on the green plunger on the top of the container until you see a fine mist. The spray is now ready to use.
  4. Aim the spray at the sore area of your mouth or throat and press down on the green plunger to release one spray. Repeat this step to give the correct number of sprays.
  5. When you have finished using the spray, push the nozzle of the spray back down against the container to store it safely until your next dose is due.
  • You should expect the soreness to have eased within seven days of using benzydamine. If there is no improvement after this time, you should arrange to see your doctor or dentist for further advice. Do not continue to use benzydamine for longer than seven days unless it is on the advice of a doctor or dentist.
  • If you are using the spray, be careful not to get it into your eyes. If this does happen by accident, rinse it out with warm water.

Along with their useful effects, most medicines can cause unwanted side-effects although not everyone experiences them. The table below contains some of the ones associated with benzydamine oral rinse and spray. You will find a full list in the manufacturer's information leaflet supplied with the medicine.

Benzydamine mouth rinse and spray side-effectsWhat can I do if I experience this?
Numbness or a stinging feeling in your mouthIf you are using the mouthwash, dilute it with an equal amount of water

If you experience any other symptoms which you think may be due to benzydamine, speak with your doctor, dentist or pharmacist for further advice.

  • Keep all medicines out of the reach and sight of children.
  • Store in a cool, dry place, away from direct heat and light.

Make sure that the person supplying this medicine knows about any other medicines that you are taking or using. This includes any medicines you have bought, and herbal and homeopathic medicines.

If you are having an operation or dental treatment, tell the person carrying out the treatment which medicines you are using.

This medicine is for you. Never give it to other people even if their condition appears to be the same as yours.

Do not keep out-of-date or unwanted medicines. Take them to your local pharmacy which will dispose of them for you.

If you have any questions about this medicine ask your pharmacist.

Never use more than the prescribed dose. If you suspect that someone has taken an overdose of this medicine, go to the accident and emergency department of your local hospital. Take the container with you, even if it is empty.

Further reading & references

Disclaimer: This article is for information only and should not be used for the diagnosis or treatment of medical conditions. EMIS has used all reasonable care in compiling the information but make no warranty as to its accuracy. Consult a doctor or other health care professional for diagnosis and treatment of medical conditions. For details see our conditions.

Original Author:
Helen Allen
Current Version:
Peer Reviewer:
Dr Hannah Gronow
Document ID:
3322 (v25)
Last Checked:
Next Review:
The Information Standard - certified member

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