NyQuil is a popular over-the-counter medication manufactured and sold by Vicks, a U.S. medicine company that treats the symptoms of the flu and other similar illnesses and allergies. With that in mind, does Nyquil expire? This article will break down all that you need to know about this popular medication.

Does Nyquil Even Expire?

Every medication or supplement have their expiry date, and Nyquil is no exception. Once it goes beyond that period, the medication’s full potency, benefits, and safety are no longer 100% guaranteed, which could result in certain adverse effects on the body.

What happens if I take expired Nyquil?

An expired NyQuil product; once it has lost its potency, you may find that it doesn’t relieve your symptoms as a fresh batch of that product would. This is because the ingredients would have already degraded, and it won’t be able to deliver its promised benefits or be safe to consume. 

But while there are no reports of expired NyQuil products causing harm, but as much as possible, do not use them beyond the expiration date indicated on the package.

How do I prolong the product’s shelf life?

Many factors can affect a product’s stability and shelf life, such as exposure to heat, cold humidity, light, preservatives, and other factors which could disrupt the contents even before the expiry date. Ideally, the products should be stored at room temperature and away from extreme temperatures, light, and moisture.

How do I dispose of expired Nyquil products?

Unused or expired medicines should be disposed of properly to avoid contamination or pollution. Normally, the standard procedure is to dispose of most prescriptions, and over-the-counter medication is to drop them off at a drug take-back site, location, or program immediately.

Others would put the expired capsules/tablets in a small sealable plastic bag along with used cat litter or coffee grounds and then throw them in the garbage. You can also check if your area has a specific set of guidelines and information regarding the proper disposal of expired medications. 

How to Find the Expiration Date of NyQuil

The expiration date for your NyQuil can usually be found in one of two places:


The expiry date of a Nyquil bottle is usually found stamped in the bottom part of the back label. It’s the one with the label “EXP” with the month and year indicated.


Nyquil Expiration Date

As for Nyquil pills, the expiration date can be found under the lower part of the box, following the same format as the one mentioned above.

What Does Nyquil Do?

Produced by Vicks, NyQuil provides temporary relief for sneezing, coughing, headaches, stuffy and runny nose, sore throat, and fever. It also causes drowsiness, which also helps facilitate sleep among people with cold symptoms having insomnia. It helps greatly with sinus congestion and pressure and coughing caused by a minor throat & bronchial irritation.

One should feel the effects of NyQuil about 30 minutes after you take it.

Side Effects Of Nyquil

The drowsy effect can have its downsides, too, since it can make you sleep at unwanted moments, so it’s best not to drive, operate machinery, or do similar activities until its effects have worn off. 

It may also cause the following:

  • Dizziness
  • Blurry vision
  • Stomach problems
  • Nausea 
  • Nervousness
  • Constipation
  • Dry mouth
  • Dry nose
  • Dry throat
  • Skin reddening
  • Blisters
  • Rashes

Tell your doctor immediately to avoid any possible health risk if any of these effects last or get worse.

Nyquil contains acetaminophen, a drug used to relieve mild to moderate bouts of pain from headaches, muscle aches, menstrual periods, colds and sore throats, toothaches, backaches, and reactions to vaccinations (shots), and to reduce fever. Taking an excessive amount could cause adverse health effects. 

Certain variants of Nyquil products contain alcohol; NyQuil Liquid, for example, contains about 10% alcohol. Alcohols are used within medicine as an antiseptic, disinfectant, and antidote, but at the same time, they could also intensify medication side effects such as sleepiness, drowsiness, and light-headedness. 

Other Frequently Asked Questions

How much Nyquil can you take in a day?

If you are taking NyQuil LiquiCaps, you can take two (2) LiquiCaps with water every six hours, but you are taking NyQuil Liquid, you should take about 30 ml every six hours.

You should not take more than four doses of NyQuil in a 24-hour period since it could cause side effects.

Is it safe for children?

Children below 12 aren’t allowed to take regular Nyquil, although those ages four to six may take Children’s NyQuil provided that a doctor prescribes it. Follow intake instructions religiously.

Can pregnant and breastfeeding women take Nyquil supplements?

While there are no studies or reports yet about the effects of Nyquil on pregnant and breastfeeding women, it’s important that they check with their health professional first before taking NyQuil or any substance to determine their safety.

Can I take NyQuil if I have high blood pressure?

Most medications have decongestants to give relief by narrowing blood vessels to reduce nasal stuffiness but can cause an increase in blood pressure if the other narrowed blood vessels also become affected.

NyQuil HBP doesn’t have decongestants, so it’s safe for people with high blood pressure. As for the other products, check the label

Disclaimer: this article does not constitute or replace medical advice. If you have an emergency or a serious medical question, please contact a medical professional or call 911 immediately. To see our full medical disclaimer, visit our Terms of Use page.

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