Imodium dosage: Interactions. When should you take it?

Imodium dosage
Medically reviewed by Dr. Mandy Liedeman

Overview

Imodium is a widely used medicine to treat acute diarrhea in adults and children. Its active ingredient is loperamide hydrochloride, which is known to decrease bowel movements, thereby promoting the intestinal absorption of fluids and salts and restoring stools to normal consistency.

What is the typical Imodium dosage?

The typical dose of imodium given in diarrhea depends on the individual’s condition and the formulation of the medicine (capsules, tablet, oral solution). The key is to follow your doctor or pharmacist’s orders and take the medicine accordingly.

Imodium dosage for adults

Imodium A-D is available in the form of tablets, capsules and liquid solutions. The tablets and capsules typically contain 2 mg of loperamide per pill, whereas the solution of 7.5 mL contains 1 mg of loperamide.

Imodium tablet and capsule dose for adults: 

  • Take 4 mg of Imodium after the first episode of diarrhea and then take 2 mg after each next loose stool. 

Imodium solution dosage for adults: 

  • The recommended dose is 15 mL (2 mg) after the first loose stool. Then the maintenance dose is to take 7.5 mL (1 mg) after each episode of diarrhea.

Imodium dosage in different forms of diarrhea: 

Type of DiarrheaDose
Acute diarrhea (three or more loose stools in 1 day)The recommended dose is 4 mg(2 tablets), followed by 2 mg(1 tablet)
Chronic Diarrhea (loose stools three or more times which lasts for four or more weeks)The recommended dose is 4 mg, followed by 2 mg after each loose stool. Once diarrhea is controlled, use lowest dosage required to control symptoms; usual maintenance dose: 4 to 8 mg/day as a single dose or in divided doses. The frequency of dosing might vary depending on the severity. 
Traveler’s Diarrhea (loose stools within 10 days of traveling)Take 4 mg after the first loose stool and 2 mg after each subsequent stool.
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Imodium dosage for children

The safe dose of Imodium in children can vary depending their age and weight. However, in a solution form, the recommended dose of Imodium is 2 mg (15 ml) followed by 1 mg (7.5 ml).

Children (Age)Imodium Dose (tablet, capsules)
Over 12 yearsSame dose as adults
8-12 years2 mg three times a day
6-8 years2 mg two times a day
2-6 years1 mg three times a day
Less than 2 yearsNot allowed to use.

Before giving Imodium to your child, it is necessary to consult a healthcare provider so as to prevent any harmful effects.

Dose of Imodium in different types of diarrhea (children)

Type of DiarrheaDose
Acute diarrhea In over 6 years of children, the recommended dose is 2 mg (15 mL), followed by 1 mg (7.5 mL)
Chronic Diarrhea Take 2 mg as the initial dose, and then as maintenance, take 1 mg. The frequency of dosing might vary depending on the severity. 
Traveler’s DiarrheaTake 2 mg after the first loose stool and 1 mg after each subsequent stool.

Imodium dosage during pregnancy and breastfeeding

Imodium belongs to pregnancy category B, meaning it is probably safe in pregnancy. More research is needed to determine the safety of Imodium during pregnancy and lactation. 

Therefore, if you’re pregnant and suffer from multiple episodes of diarrhea, it is better to consult your healthcare professional before taking any antidiarrheal. 

The doctor will assess your symptoms, medical history and the severity of symptoms to provide the safest option for you and your baby. 

However, in some cases, 2 mg of imodium is safe to prescribe in most pregnant females. If you’re breastfeeding, it is important to ask your doctor whether Imodium is safe for you and the baby. Some research has shown small amounts of imodium in breast milk. However, it is considered safe for the child.

What happens if you miss a dose of Imodium?

If you or your child forgot to take Imodium on time, you can take the medicine after passing a watery stool. However, don’t take an additional dose of Imodium to compensate for the forgotten dose, as it can lead to several side effects. If it is time for the next dose, there is no need to take the missed dose as you can go back to your recommended dosing schedule as given by your doctor or pharmacist. 

If you are still confused about what to do if you have missed a dose of Imodium, you can contact your doctor or pharmacist right away.

What is the Imodium dosage for a certain health condition?

There is no need for dose adjustments if you suffer from any health conditions like diabetes, hypertension or any other disease. However, if you have loose, watery diarrhea, the best option is to see a healthcare provider so as to have a proper treatment plan. Make sure that you keep yourself hydrated and stick to bland foods that are easier to digest.

Which medication interacts with Imodium?

Imodium can interact with some drugs that break down in the body through the same enzymes. These interactions can lead to a drastically increased level of medicines in the body causing harmful effects. 

So, if you’re taking any of the following medicines with Imodium, it is better to inform your healthcare provider:

This list does not include all the possible interactions, therefore, if you’re taking any medicines, supplements or herbal drugs, you need to contact your healthcare provider immediately.

When should I see a doctor?

If your diarrhea lasts for more than 24 hours, even after taking Imodium, it is essential to call your healthcare provider. Also, you need to keep an eye on the following symptoms:

  • Loose, watery diarrhea that lasts for more than 48 hours
  • Six or more loose stools within one day
  • Severe abdominal pain or frequent vomiting
  • Inability to tolerate food or fluids
  • Mucus, blood, or pus in the stool
  • You notice dehydration symptoms like feeling dizzy, tired and passing dark-colored urine 

Not to mention, if you experience constipation with abdominal swelling or severe pain, do not take Imodium as these symptoms might indicate paralytic ileus. 

If you are unsure about Imodium and its side effects you can talk to one of our doctors now for consultation.

FAQs about Imodium

Are there any side effects associated with Imodium use?

Imodium generally does not cause any side effects in a lot of people. However, if you notice the following symptoms after taking the medicine, you need to contact a healthcare professional immediately:
Allergic reactions like skin rashes, hives or swelling on any part of the body
Irregular or slow heartbeat
Persistent nausea, vomiting or severe stomach pain
Trouble passing urine

Some mild side effects like constipation, nausea, dizziness and dry mouth do not need immediate medical attention, as the body might take some time to adjust to the medicine. However, if you experience these symptoms persistently, then consult your care team. 

How long can I take Imodium for diarrhea relief?

Generally, it takes almost 48 hours to recover from acute diarrhea completely. You shouldn’t use Imodium for more than two days in a row as it increases the risk of side effects. However, if your symptoms persist for more than two days, getting help from a healthcare provider is essential to evaluate the underlying medical condition.

Can I take more than the recommended dosage if my symptoms are severe?

No, you should not increase your dose unless instructed by your healthcare provider. Taking more than the recommended dose can mask the underlying symptoms and increase the risk of side effects and complications. If you have severe or persistent symptoms, it’s best to consult your healthcare provider for appropriate management. 

Your Doctors Online uses high-quality and trustworthy sources to ensure content accuracy and reliability. We rely on peer-reviewed studies, academic research institutions and medical associations to provide up-to-date and evidence-based information to the users.

  • Diarrhoea-fast, Simply Stops. “Imodium.” BRITISH MEDICAL JOURNAL 282 (1981): 21.
  • Nukala, Pavan Kumar, et al. “Multi-dose oral abuse deterrent formulation of loperamide using hot melt extrusion.” International journal of pharmaceutics 569 (2019): 118629.
  • Thermometer, A. “IMODIUM.” CAN. FAM. PHYSICIAN 29 (1983).
  • Paterson, I. D. “The use of loperamide for treatment of “difficult to manage” chronic diarrhoea in adults.” Journal of International Medical Research 1.2 (1973): 459-461.

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