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How To Take Pills You Can't Swallow

Updated on November 6, 2009

Nowadays it is hard to go five paces without running into some massively large pill you're supposed to swallow. It's ridiculous, and whilst a portion of the population has no trouble gulping down large solid hunks as if they were pelicans, the more delicate and refined of us find that our throats close up at the mere thought of taking a pill. We try though, only to find that they either get stuck at the front of the mouth, or that our soft mouthy parts at the back are preventing us from swallowing it properly. The worst occurs when you halfway get there and it kind of gets stuck and you must down half a gallon of the nearest liquid in order to wash it down, after which you are a shaking, trembling mess.

Now, good advice would be to practice taking pills with multi vitamins or something and do it every day so that when the day comes that you do need to take big antibiotic pills, or swallow a small robot (it will happen eventually,) you can do it with a suave confidence.

Or you can do what I do, crush them up and then take them. Now, some medications could make you pretty sick if you do this, so I advise you to consult with your medical professional first. My doctor just gave up eventually and told me to go ahead and crush amoxycillin pills, but ask yours first, I don't know what you're taking and I can only consult with my cat mittens who wants all humans to die, so don't take our word for anything.

Once you get permission to crush however, here's how to do it to maximum effect. A paramedic friend recommends crushing pills into jam or honey. This means that the pills don't go everywhere and you get all the mediciney goodness from them. I would take his advice first, but it's not how I do it.

I crush mine up into a bowl, then add a little bit of yoghurt, then lick that down from a spoon. The medicine sticks to the yoghurt like breadcrumbs on a chicken drumstick, so it only takes a few dollops of this method interspersed with 'clean' medicine free spoon fulls to clear the palate to take the pill entirely. Do this quickly and you can have the whole pill down, without too much of a gross taste within a minute or two. It is quick, relatively painless, and at no point in the proceedings do you think that you are going to choke and die.


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    • quarsarte profile image

      quarsarte 8 years ago

      Put your pills in your mouth, take a large mouthfull of water, tilt your head back. The pills will fall to the back of your throat. You can swallow from one to five or six with this method, or do a couple of times if you have a large number or several large pills.

    • Hope Alexander profile image

      Hope Alexander 8 years ago

      They really should make all pills in liquid or chewable form, I think. So many people have these problems.

    • profile image

      pauls_boat 8 years ago

      i have always had problems with swollowing pills for years i could only take them with a large glass of milk if i tried water i could put the tablet on my toung then drink a glass of water then when i opened my mouth the tablet would still be there but with milk being more viscous i could get the tablet down.

      now a days i have to take pain killers 24/7 as i broke my back in a accedent in the army i can get them down with a glass of water most of the time and i am taking tablets 4 times a day and still having trouble i cannot crush the ones i only take twice a day as they are ment to be in swolowed whole so they slowely disolve.

      i wish i could get my meds in disolvable form then there would not be a problem.

      good idea to try yougart or something like it though.

    • breakfastpop profile image

      breakfastpop 8 years ago

      I learned to swallow pills when I turned fifty. Before then, I crushed them or asked for liquid. My mother used to crush my aspirin in applesauce and I have detested applesauce ever since. Interesting hub. I thought I was the only one with this problem.