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Indications:

Benzocaine is a local anesthetic (numbing medication). It works by blocking nerve signals in your body. Benzocaine topical is used to reduce pain or discomfort caused by minor skin irritations, sore throat, sunburn, teething pain, vaginal or rectal irritation, ingrown toenails, hemorrhoids, and many other sources of minor pain on a surface of the body. Benzocaine is also used to numb the skin or surfaces inside the mouth, nose, throat, vagina, or rectum to lessen the pain of inserting a medical instrument such as a tube or speculum. Benzocaine topical may also be used for other purposes not listed in this medication guide.

Contraindications:

If you have any of these other conditions, you may need a dose adjustment or special tests to safely use benzocaine topical: asthma, bronchitis, emphysema, or other breathing disorder; heart disease; a personal or family history of methemoglobinemia, or any genetic enzyme deficiency; or if you smoke.

Adverse reactions:

Get emergency medical help if you have any of these signs of an allergic reaction: hives; difficulty breathing; swelling of your face, lips, tongue, or throat. Stop using benzocaine topical and call your doctor at once if you have any of these serious side effects: severe burning, stinging, or sensitivity where the medicine is applied; swelling, warmth, or redness; oozing, blistering, or any signs of infection; or headache, weakness, dizziness, breathing problems, fast heart rate, and gray or bluish colored skin (rare but serious side effects of benzocaine). Less serious side effects may include: mild stinging, burning, or itching where the medicine is applied; skin tenderness or redness; or dry white flakes where the medicine was applied.

Interactions:

It is not likely that other drugs you take orally or inject will have an effect on topically applied benzocaine. But many drugs can interact with each other. Tell your doctor about all your prescription and over-the-counter medications, vitamins, minerals, herbal products, and drugs prescribed by other doctors. Do not start a new medication without telling your doctor.

Warnings:

There are many brands and forms of benzocaine topical available and not all brands are listed on this leaflet. An overdose of numbing medications can cause fatal side effects if too much of the medicine is absorbed through your skin and into your blood. This is more likely to occur when using a numbing medicine without the advice of a medical doctor (such as during a cosmetic procedure like laser hair removal). Overdose symptoms may include uneven heartbeats, seizure (convulsions), coma, slowed breathing, or respiratory failure (breathing stops). Your body may absorb more of this medication if you use too much, if you apply it over large skin areas, or if you apply heat, bandages, or plastic wrap to treated skin areas. Skin that is cut or irritated may also absorb more topical medication than healthy skin. Use the smallest amount of this medication needed to numb the skin or relieve pain. Do not use large amounts of benzocaine topical, or cover treated skin areas with a bandage or plastic wrap without medical advice. Be aware that many cosmetic procedures are performed without a medical doctor present. Do not use benzocaine topical if you have a blood cell disorder called methemoglobinemia. Before using benzocaine topical, tell your doctor if you have any type of inherited enzyme deficiency, a breathing disorder such as asthma or emphysema, or if you smoke. Call your doctor if your symptoms do not improve or if they get worse within the first 7 days of using benzocaine topical. Also call your doctor if your symptoms had cleared up but then came back. If you are treating a sore throat, call your doctor if the pain is severe or lasts longer than 2 days, especially if you also develop a fever, headache, skin rash, swelling, nausea, vomiting, cough, or breathing problems. FDA pregnancy category C. It is not known whether this medication is harmful to an unborn baby. Before using benzocaine topical, tell your doctor if you are pregnant or plan to become pregnant during treatment. It is not known whether benzocaine topical passes into breast milk or if it could harm a nursing baby. Do not use this medication without telling your doctor if you are breast-feeding a baby. Do not use this medicine on a child younger than 1 year old. Benzocaine topical is for use only on the surface of your body, or just inside the vagina or rectum. Avoid getting this medication in your eyes. Avoid swallowing the gel, liquid, or ointment while applying it to your gums or the inside of your mouth. The throat spray or oral lozenge may be swallowed gradually during use. Do not apply other medications to the same affected areas you treat with benzocaine topical, unless your doctor has told you otherwise. Avoid eating within 1 hour after using benzocaine topical on your gums or inside your mouth.

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