• Saturday, December 03, 2022

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Doctor shares best way to swallow pills without gagging

By: Kimberly Rodrigues

Many people have difficulty swallowing tablets, and this can turn out to be a painful ordeal if medication needs to be taken on a daily basis.

We are accustomed to chewing food before swallowing it, however, tablets and capsules require us to disregard the normal chew and swallow reflex which could cause some people to gag, vomit or even choke.

According to Harvard, one in three people has difficulty swallowing oral medication. But one TikToker, who is an NHS doctor has shared the best way to swallow oral medication smoothly, without gagging.

Responding to a post in which a user had found a hack to help swallow medicine – Dr Karan Rajan is reported to have said it works well.

The user had put a capsule on their tongue, took a gulp of water but didn’t swallow, they then put their head forward before swallowing the medicine, the Mirror informs.

The doctor is quoted as saying, “Now the best way to swallow capsules is with the head tilted forwards.

“This may seem strange, but capsules are light and float in water, so when the head is tilted forward, capsules float towards the throat.

“But when the head position is neutral or slightly tilted back, the capsules float towards the teeth, making swallowing a bit more difficult.

“Now, when it comes to tablets and pills, you want your head tilted slightly back.

“This is because tablets and pills can be slightly heavier and denser – so the focus needs to be on flushing the medication into the fairings.

“That’s the tube that connects the mouth and the oesophagus.”

However, Dr Karan adds that this method may not make a huge difference for those who don’t have difficulty swallowing medicine.

Taking pills with food and water can help you swallow smoothly, informs the NHS.

 

They also advise that you should never throw the pills towards the back of your throat, or tip your head back too far back, as this could make swallowing the pills even harder.

“Do not crush pills, open capsules, or alter your medicine without getting medical advice.

“This could stop the medicine working properly,” the NHS advises.

Additionally, in case you experience swallowing issues, ask a pharmacist for other versions of your medication that may be available in a different form, as the fear of choking could make your throat tense and narrow.

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