What It's For & How To Take
Doxycycline is an antibiotic that works by blocking the growth of bacteria. Doxycycline is usually used to treat a wide variety of bacterial infections.
Doxycycline is also used to prevent malaria when traveling. If you are using doxycycline for malaria prevention, ask your pharmacist to explain the medication directions clearly.
Do not take an antibiotic without first being seen by a prescriber. Not all antibiotics work for all types of infections. If you take an antibiotic that is not prescribed for you, the condition might get worse.
Doxycycline will not work to treat the common cold or flu. This antibiotic may not be effective if it has been overused in conditions that are not related to bacterial infections.
Doxycycline is usually prescribed to be taken 1-2 times daily, or as directed by your physician. This antibiotic works best when taken on an empty stomach, 1 hour before or 2 hours after a meal. Take this medication with a full glass of water. Do not lie down for 30 minutes after your dose of doxycycline to help avoid heartburn.
Take doxycycline at least 2 hours before or after vitamins or antacids such as Tums™ or Mylanta™. Some foods high in calcium such as yogurt or milk may also block doxycycline from working. Ask your pharmacist what you can and can’t have with this medication
Take this medication at evenly spaced intervals. Antibiotics work best when a constant level is maintained in the body.
If you forget to take a dose, take it as soon as you remember. If it is near the time of your next dose, skip it and continue with your normal dose time. Unless otherwise directed, do not take a double dose to make up the missed dose.
Take this medication until it is all done, even if you are feeling better and the symptoms are gone. If you stop taking your antibiotic, the infection might come back and may be harder to treat.
Warnings & Cautions
- Antibiotic therapy may sometimes allow for growth of yeast in your mouth or cause a vaginal yeast infection in women. Tell your pharmacist or doctor if you have any symptoms of yeast in your mouth (such as white patches or a dry/chalky feeling in your mouth) or any symptoms of a vaginal yeast infection (such as itching, discharge, redness or swelling).
- Doxycycline should not be used during pregnancy because it may harm an unborn baby. This medication should only be used during breastfeeding when clearly needed. Let your pharmacist or doctor know if you are pregnant or breastfeeding before taking this medication.
- Some antibiotics may decrease the effect of birth control. If you are taking birth control, discuss this with your doctor or pharmacist before starting a course of therapy with doxycycline. You may need to use backup birth control.
- You are more likely to get a sunburn while taking this medication. If you can't stay out of the sun, cover up with clothing and sunscreen.
Interactions & Side Effects
- Tell your pharmacist or doctor all your medication allergies so they may determine if doxycycline is safe for you to take.
- Avoid dangerous drug interactions. Tell your pharmacist or doctor all the other medication you are taking, including over the counter supplements, even if you don't take them very often.
- Ask your doctor if this medication is safe to take with your current health conditions. Tell your doctor if you have liver or kidney disease, esophagus problems, trouble swallowing, any other infections or any other medical conditions.
- While taking doxycycline, you may have some nausea, diarrhea or vomiting. If these or any other unwanted side effects persist, contact your doctor or pharmacist to talk about it with them.
- Call your doctor right away if you have any severe abdominal pain, constant diarrhea or mucus or blood in your stool.