From Tracie: How Do You Swallow Pills?

Saturday, August 10, 2013

How Do You Swallow Pills?

After a full week celebrating Katarina's 10th birthday, and then recovering from celebrating, we were all fighting off colds last week.

Thomas hates to take medicine, but I made him take several doses of pills over the last couple of days.

Last night I handed him two pills and a drink. As I stood there watching him, he put the pill in his mouth and started gagging.

"Why aren't you swallowing the pill?" I asked.

"They are so huge, I'm having a hard time with them. I had this issue with the last dose, too," he answered.

"But you didn't drink the water yet, so you shouldn't be swallowing," I responded, confused.

This was how I learned that Thomas was never taught to drink something to help you swallow pills.

When I take a pill, I actually put it under my tongue, and then use a drink of water to swallow it. I know the under the tongue thing is a little different, but it keeps me from tasting the pill, and they seem to go down better for me that way.

This makes me wonder... How do you swallow pills? Do you swallow the pill by itself and then drink something, or do you use a drink to aid in the pill swallowing? And do you put the pill under your tongue (I can't be the only one who does that, right)?


  1. Drink to help w/ the pill swallowing FOR SURE! LOL! ;) Glad you showed him the way!

    1. Oh yeah. He has been converted to using the drink for sure. You can tell how little he takes medicine that it took me 11 years of marriage to notice he needed this help.

  2. I am choker. I toss the pill back like a shot and drink as much water as I can stand. I don't want to give that pill any chance to get stuck anywhere.

  3. I have a lot of difficulty swallowing pills - partly due to choking on a lolly when I was little. It's not a one hundred percent success rate, but what I have to do is take a sip of drink, tilt my head back like I'm gargling and literally drop the pill so that it goes down my throat in a smooth motion as I'm swallowing. I cannot get it consistently any other way. :/

  4. I put them as far back as I can and then throw back a drink. As many pills as I have to take every day, I've perfected it.

  5. Funny because this conversation came up on Facebook tonight and a few of my friends said they'd rather get a shot in the butt than swallow a pill! Honestly I'm terrible at it. I usually ask for a liquid or I grind pills with a mortar and pestle. I'm so bad. In the times in which that isn't possible..I've definitely used water.

  6. I've always had problems swallowing pills, to the point where even now, I don't. I have to bite anything that goes in my mouth before I can swallow it, and believe me, most pills taste even worse than you would think when they are chewed!

    It also means I don't really get the benefit of time released drugs, I get the full impact right away, which can be interesting. ;-)

  7. love this post and I'll tell you why - I have a swallowing pill phobia. I know. I am 35 and I still struggle. In fact, I am currently taking prenatal pills in gummy form. So embarrassing to admit it, but it's true. I have struggled with this my entire life. For me, gel caps work best but first I take a huge sip of water then a huge gulp to take it down. horse pills terrify me. I feel Thomas' pain.


  8. I tip a heap of pills into my head throw them into my mouth and take a drink of water and swallow, and by a heap I mean like 10 or more small tablets if they are big I will only take 4 or 5 at a time. I have come a long way from the little girl who couldn't swallow a tiny tablet

  9. Personally, it depends on the pill - the texture, the taste and size. Most, I swallow without water. I'm not a huge fan of pills, but I do understand they are important sometimes.

    Just a tip for those who struggle with swallowing pills, many can be chopped up and put in apple sauce or yogurt and they go down much easier. (My father-in-law had to do this for quite a while after his stroke.)

  10. You know, I never really thought about it!! First I put the pill in my mouth, then I take a swig of water. It never even crossed my mind to do it differently. But now that you say it, I'm not sure I've ever specifically told either of my children this. I need to!! --Lisa

  11. Definitely need water. But I have one kid, no matter how many times I teach him, that pill keeps coming back up. I swear he'll need to crush medication in jam until he's... Well forever forever probably....

  12. Yeah I can't swallow a pill without a drink to help get it down! Jack has taken his pills in yogurt, applesauce, and now in nutella (although he chews them in the nutella).

  13. Way to go Nurse Tracie, taking good care of him. Are all men like this? My husband hates taking medicine too and would rather whine and feel terrible than take anything. I do pretty much what you do I put the pill in first then take a drink. My hubby takes a drink and holds some water in his mouth, tilts his head back, and then sticks the pill in.

  14. When I was about 9 I had to learn to swallow pills. My mom told me to put it as far back on my tongue as I could without gagging. Then, take a medium sized gulp of water (so you can get it down in one go) and pretend that the pill is "a rock on the shore of the beach" and the water is "a tidal wave coming in to wash it down." (Analogies, they're great.) Anyway, I've been able to do it ever since!

    I do know people who swallow the pill, then drink... never made sense to me. :|

  15. I learned a little trick, after I got clean. If you put the pill in your mouth, toward the front teeth, and face slightly downward when you take the drink, the pill goes down easier. It's probably a good thing I didn't know that when I took pills for "fun", as I might have taken all. the. pills.