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Cannot swallow tablets/capsules and the like


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I use to be quite the same. But I got over it and now the only time I have problems swallowing pills is when I'm thinking about it. I take a multivitamin every morning, they're by no means small. I found I swallow them best when I relax, and I swallow gently with lots of water in my mouth. It's when I start panicking over it then it goes down funny. I'm sure this sounds easier than what is once you have to do it, but just put a little water in your mouth, pop the pill towards the back of your mouth and try and swallow like you would if you were just taking a gulp of water. And remember to relax, that's the key!

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I totally can relate to this. I have an intense fear of swallowing medication whole...

 

It started when I was young. I almost choked to death on a potato chip, and I've been afraid to swallow anything whole ever since...

 

I can't really help you in this department except to say just chew it up. And if they come in capsules break them open and pour in the contents.

 

chewed pills are nasty, but you'll still get the benefit...

 

Is there any kind of hypno therapy out there that can help people like us?

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When I was a young teenager I also had trouble swallowing capsules and tablets. My aunt told me to try and swallow it with orange juice, the kind that has the pulp because it is kind of thick and helps the capsule float on down. It was much easier that using water. That is how I learned and never had any more trouble with it.

 

The only reason NOT to use orange juice is if the drug info sheet advises against it. I only know of a few medications that say do not take with citrus juices(mostly grapefruit) and most of those are cholesterol meds if I remember correctly.

 

But seriously the OJ was the thing that taught me to swallow them easily. After learning how and using the OJ for a while I eventually learned how to do it with just water.

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Here is another trick:

 

If it is a capsule, put the capsule in your mouth with your liquid of choice (water, oj, milk, whatever). Tilt your head forward and hold the liquid and capsule in your mouth for a second or so. The capsule will float on the liquid and naturally head for the back of your mouth. Then swallow the whole thing.

 

If it is a pill, then tilt your head back instead of forward. The pill will sink in the liquid and once again be at the back of your mouth. Then swallow.

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You know, I had this problem up until about a week ago. I used to just CHEW each pill, (except capsules) since it was easier for me and I could bare the taste since I am used to the nasty liquid. I have new allergy medicine called Zyrtec for this kitten we bought and my partner sat with me for hours until I was over my fear of swallowing the pill. I kept some water in my mouth and popped the pill in, swished and swallowed. (swishing for me made sure it was lost in the sea of water) After twenty one years, I am now officially able to swallow pills! You can do it too, lol. Enough informercial.

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Another trick:

 

Scream or sing very loud (rock is good for this) before getting ready to take your pills.

 

I never did have a problem with swallowing pills, but last year I had to take some medicine that were Huge. And you couldn't break 'em up.

 

The screaming or singing beforehand relaxs your throat, and well, you in general.

 

Then, I take a small sip of water, tip my head, pop the pill in the back of my throat and swallow. Some pills you do not want dissolving! lol. Awful, awful tasting things those were.

 

Any success stories to tell?

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I know that some capsules and tablets are NOT to be crushed are broken, especially if they are time released. If you crush or break them too much will be in your system at once very quickly, which could lead to problems.

 

Time released tablets and caps are designed to disolve slowly into the system over a period of time, so I would be very careful about crushing or breaking. I wouuld ask the pharmacist before ever doing that.

 

I would ask about the liquid form of any meds if you are unable to swallow tabs or caps.

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Although I don't have an instant gag reflex when I take pills, I do prefer them to go down smoothly, and the one thing that I've found works for me is...

 

BANANAS. Take a bite, chew it a little, then stick the pill into the mush that's in your mouth, and swallow. I don't even feel it, the banana provides just enough "padding" and lubrication. I've also tried it with bread, but it's much harder to chew it into a uniform paste in your mouth.

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coollady is right - not all tablets can be crushed. you must check the package insert or ask your pharmacist about the particular medication you intend to crush.

 

for medicines that can be crushed, you can buy a pill splitter to help break them.

 

you can practice learning to swallow tablets by using candy such as m&m's. that way you can take your time and swallow as many as need be until you feel comfortable.

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I would try practicing some of these swallowing techniques, but I wouldnt try them with your meds. I would start small, say like a tic tac, and then move up to plain M&M;s and then the last and final wouldbe peanut M&M;s or something of a similar side. If you do not manage to swallow you get a consolation prize, fresh breath or chocolate goodness!

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