Nasacort vs Flonase: What’s The Difference?

Nasal sprays have been a staple for those suffering from allergies as it is easy to use and also easy to find. More than that, nasal sprays are proven to give effective results in alleviating sudden allergies specifically ones that cause nasal symptoms such as sneezing too much.

Two of the most well known nasal sprays and allergy medications are Nasacort and Flonase. Considered as corticosteroid drugs, they are best known for reducing inflammation you would usually get from your allergies.

Aside from these two, there are loads of nasal sprays and allergy medications available over the counter. With that said, it might be difficult for you to differentiate each and weigh your options apart. To know more about the differences between these two leading allergy medications, read on.


What is Nasacort?

Starting off with Nasacort, the nasal spray is distinct for its component called triamcinolone acetonide. This is considered as a type of steroid. Mainly, what is does is help prevent your body release substances that cause the inflammation and your nasal allergy.

This would be perfect for when you usually sneeze, itch, or experience runny nose whenever you come in contact with something allergy triggering, have seasonal allergies, or have hay fever.

In using Nasacort Aerosol Spray, it is important to read and follow the instructions carefully. This can be easily found on the product’s package. This would also usually come with precautions. If you find you are in any risk of side effects while using the product, consult your doctor first before using it.

Typically, a safe and recommended dose for adults is 2 sprays in each nostril. This can be done once or twice a day. For children, it is only recommended to have a dose of 1 to 2 sprays in each nostril and done once a day. Anything more than that, you would first have to ask your doctor for any risk of side effects.


What is Flonase?

Flonase is also a well known nasal spray suspension and unlike Nasacort, its main active ingredient for treating nasal allergies is Fluticasone propionate. This is a kind of synthetic corticosteroid.

This component is known for relieving seasonal nasal allergies as well as other nasal symptoms that are non-allergic such as a common runny nose, itching, and sneezing. Other than nasal symptoms, the component is also effective in relieving other forms of allergy such as watery and itchy eyes.

Much like triamcinolone, its way of treating your allergies is also preventing the formation of substances in your body that cause the allergic reactions.

In using it, read and follow the directions carefully. Oftentimes, the product is refillable. Doing this should be handled with care as well. The spray can only be used in the nose ideally once or twice a day.

Although, as mentioned, the component is effective in treating eye symptoms caused by allergies, it is important that you do not spray the product on to your eyes.

There is a correct way to prime the bottle and the instructions for this can be found on the information sheet included in the product. Have the pharmacy replace your product without this included. After using, make sure to clean the applicator.


How to Use Nasal Sprays

In using these nasal sprays, there is an ideal technique to get the best results and fast treatment. For those who have never used it before, this might be tricky in the first few tries and might cause you to waste a few sprays.

Most likely, if the spray does not get in your nose it will run in the back of your throat. This does not help in relieving your symptoms and would just waste your spray.

To use it, steady your head upright. Do not tilt it back as some would initially think. Insert the applicator or the tip to your nostril and aim for the sides of your nose, not the middle part. Spray the product and sniff gently. Not too aggressive as this could cause the product to go down your throat.



Before heading on to the differences of the two nasal sprays, it is best to know first what are the similarities of the two. These include their uses, components, dosage, etc.

Both products can be bought over the counter. This is also the reason why these two are the most used nasal sprays for allergies. Having a prescription is usually not necessary. However, as mentioned, if you suffer symptoms that are somewhat different, consult your doctor first before using any of the products.

Generic versions of both products are also available. Just ask pharmacists for the main component of the two products and have them provide you the generic versions of the products.

Both sprays provide around 50-55 mcg of content per spray. This is why the recommended dose for adults and children are also similar between the two products. Anything more than that would have to be consulted by the doctor.



There are some distinct differences between the two brands that are worth mentioning.

For instance, Nasacort only has one variety. Meanwhile, Flonase has various varieties that are meant to be used for your different preferences. Flonase has a version available for children called Flonase Children’s Allergy Relief and Flonase Sensimist Allergy Relief.

However, as it turns out, the children’s version of Flonase produces the same amount of mcg per spray which is 50 mcg. The container is just smaller, therefore, producing lower counts. The Sensimist version, on the other hand, produces half of this amount.

Both sprays are known to treat any nasal symptoms of seasonal allergic reactions. However, only Flonase is effective to be used in nasal symptoms that are non-allergic.

The two also differs in their length of treatment. Nasacort is ideally only used for short term. Using it for more than one week while your symptoms still persisting, it is best to consult your doctor already.

Meanwhile, Flonase can be used for long term up to 6 months for adults and 2 months for children if the allergic reactions keep on coming back from time to time. However, persistent and continuous symptoms call for a check up with the doctor as well.


Side Effects

As with most medicinal products, side effects are always bound to happen with misuse or overuse. For some, these also come up because of pre-existing conditions. It is also normal for others to experience these as a reaction of the body to the drug. It usually varies from person to person.

These are some of the possible and common side effects people would usually complain about while using both nasal sprays.

A headache, sore throat, bloody nose, cough, and irritation are some of the reported side effects of both nasal sprays. However, only Flonase has been reported to cause nausea, vomiting, and symptoms of asthma. Nasacort, on the other hand, has been reported to cause sneezing instead of alleviating it.

On more serious kinds of side effects, both products are believed to cause instances of nose bleeding, puncture in the nasal septum, glaucoma, cataracts, and worsening of infections. Flonase is also known to have effects when interacted with HIV drugs including ritonavir, indinavir, nelfinavir, saquinavir, and lopinavir.


Which is Better?

The two nasal sprays have really little differences in all aspects and almost no difference in its effectivity. However, there are still some factors to consider in choosing your nasal spray that is in accordance to your preferences.

For instance, if your nasal allergy symptoms such as sneezing, runny nose, and itchy nose are accompanied by eye symptoms as well such as watery and itchy eyes then Flonase is known to treat this better than Nasacort.

This is because the active and main ingredient in Flonase is known to relieve this form of allergic symptoms as well as compared to Nasacort that can only relieve nasal symptoms of allergy.

If your concern, on the other hand, involves taste or smell, Nasacort has been proven to produce less scent than Flonase. Although this would not matter as much with your nose runny and smelling compromised, some would prefer their nasal sprays odorless.



Flonase and Nasacort are proven treatments for when you suffer from nasal symptoms due to allergic reactions. As enumerated, both products have a few similarities. Their differences as well are very slight. This includes a few differences in their side effects.

The two also features two varying components that each provide their own benefits. It is first ideal to understand and assess the kind of nasal symptoms you are suffering to know which one is better for you. It is also important to note that Flonase provides more risk if you are taking other drugs, specifically one to treat HIV.

But if you are going through a typical nasal allergic reaction, both are equally effective. It just matters with your preference such as its scent and its availability and price.

However, even if the product is available over the counter, it is always best to consult your doctor as they can provide better drugs for your situation.