Pill-swallowing problem

I can't swallow pills. Every night I try to take my vitamin, but I can never actually get it down. I have tried so many different ways to swallow it and it just won't go down.

I'm 14, so my parents wont get me chewables and I really just need a way to take my vitamins.

-Sick of Swallowing Failures

Hey babe, this is a common problem, so def don't think you're alone in this! I know plenty of adults who still have difficulty swallowing pills, but have no fear, there are some tricks that help.

Try diff vitamins!

First, talk to your parents about your issue. Let them know that it's a common problem and if there are any alternatives then they should consider letting you try. There are teen and adult vitamins out there in chewable, liquid, gummy, chewing gum and even chocolate forms. If you don't HAVE to take a pill, see if an alternative vitamin would work for you.

Break 'em up

If you wanna just bite the bullet and nix this pill phobia, then these techniques might work for you. First, try using a dull knife to chop the pill in half (or even quarters, depending on how big it is), by putting down pressure right in the middle of the pill. It you cut it into smaller parts, it will be easier to swallow with several separate water gulps. If the idea of swallowing more than
once bothers you though, then maybe this technique isn't right for you.

Sneak technique

You can also try to crush the pill into powder form and putting the powder into a spoonful of yogurt or pudding. Ask your parents to help you with this first just so you can see how it works. There are several ways to do this, but using the flat side of a dull knife and gently pushing down on the pill should crush it. Then, sprinkle it onto a spoonful of goo. And don't worry, you can't taste the powder if you have enough pudding or yogurt on the spoon. My mom used this trick to sneak me meds this way when I was a kid and it always worked!

Test it out and see which option works best for you. And remember, if you're going to try different techniques, only try it once a day or however many times your doc or the bottle recommends. I'm sure you'll be a pro in no time! 
What's up, doc?
As always, I would talk to a doctor to get the best medical opinion. Since these  pills are only vitamins and aren't necessarily key to your health, like prescription meds, I wouldn't worry too much about pressuring yourself into getting this right, right away. However, if you are prescribed a pill-form medicine by a doc  for any reason, it's important that you are taking the meds as often as prescribed.
-Katie S.

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10/5/2009 7:00:00 AM