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12 year old can't swallow pills.... 12 year old can't swallow pills....

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Unread 01-21-2005, 09:39 PM
12 year old can't swallow pills....

Hope all sisters are doing well!

My 12 year old daughter is not capable of swallowing pills. Getting her to take pain medication (when needed) is an absolute nightmare!

It's almost like she has a mental block about it. I have tried the gradual process...starting out by practicing with small things like half a tic-tac and then working our way up. She can't do it.

We have resorted to crushing it up and putting it in applesauce and even that is torture to feed her!

Any sisters out there who have trouble swallowing pills or have children that have difficulties?

I need help because at some point, she is going to be too old for chewable and liquid medicine!! One good thing out of all of this is that she has learned to have a high tolerance for pain...she would rather suffer than try to take medicine!


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Unread 01-21-2005, 09:50 PM
12 year old can't swallow pills....

Have her try this.....give her a glass of water with a straw in it. Have her place the pill as far back on her tongue as possible and then drink the water through the straw. The force of the water coming through the straw will push the pill all the way back and down her throat. Perhaps she could practice using tic tacs instead of the pill.

My daughter had the same problem as a child, and this always worked for her.
Unread 01-21-2005, 10:07 PM
12 year old can't swallow pills....

Thanks Catherine ..I will give it a try!!

Best wishes,


Keep the posts coming gals...I may need plan b, plan c, plan d....
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Unread 01-22-2005, 12:24 AM
12 year old can't swallow pills....

Hi Sarah,

I totally understand what your daughter is going through! I could never - ever swallow a pill when I was younger. I even had a hard time as an adult and still sometimes do.

I actually learned to swallow smaller pills like Tylenol or Advil the way Catherine stated. I put the pill as far back on my tongue as I could and then drank quickly through a straw.

Someone told me when I was younger to practice swallowing pills by using bread. Just pinch off a small piece and roll it into a ball and swallow it. I was told that I could make bigger pieces as I got to the point where I could swallow them. I never tried it, so I don't know if it would work but it seemed logical.

Whenever I was being prescribed something, I always asked 'how big is this pill?' I would then ask my doctor for chewable or liquid meds. One day I asked my doctor how I could 'learn' to swallow capsules or caplets. He told me to remember that as we eat, we usually swallow pieces of food that are bigger than a pill. I guess it worked for me...I can swallow them now. I just have to keep reminding myself of that.

I do hope you find some way to help your DD so she can begin swallowing pills. I know it is very hard!


Unread 01-22-2005, 06:21 AM
12 year old can't swallow pills....

My stepdaughter when younger wouldn't swallow tablets, which was very hard, as she's on 18 tablets a day, we ground them and put them on tablespoon with water.
Eventually, we pointed out that if she swallowed them, she wouldn't be able to taste them at all, she persevered, and we tried a straw, but she didn't like it, she used to drink water from a bottle, and that did the trick. She's 18 now, and just has a glass of water. She's on even more medication now, but takes it all in her stride!
hope this helps!
Unread 01-22-2005, 03:58 PM
12 year old can't swallow pills....

I am just like your DD. I am 32 years old and have a heck of a time swallowing pills. I choked once as a kid and that was about that. I usually ask for liquid meds... or when I go to the pharmacy, I make them show me the size. If they are huge, I go home and call the doctor for something smaller if I can't' crush it. You'd be amazed at the amount of meds out there that should not be crushed!! If it is bigger than a Advil sized coated tablet, I am NOT going to get it down. My problem is in my head more than anything.

Wanna hear the good news.... they now make LIQUID Tylenol for adults!! Woooo Hoooo!! Lots of kids at the middle school where I work can't swallow pills either, and they can't take 10 kids chewable ones as that gets expensive for the parent. So, I tell them it now is in a liquid and they are happy pain free campers.

Just an idea.

Unread 01-23-2005, 08:25 PM
12 year old can't swallow pills....


Deb and Andi.....I can TOTALLy relate. I too as a young girl could not swallow a pill. My parents had to crush mine up in a teaspoon...and put honey on it. That made it much easier...but I still took FOREVER to get it all down. I choaked alot when I was little too.....and still have a fear of choaking as an adult. Now....I can swallow them just fine....if they're not the size of a horse pill...hee hee.....but find that if I think about it too much.....I can't get them down. My 8 other brothers and sisters still like to tease me about it to this day. Oh well....that's what happens when your the youngest child I guess.

Unread 01-24-2005, 02:03 AM
12 year old can't swallow pills....

I still can't swallow pills. I know it is just a mental block, but I gag something fierce.

What I do is take a mouthful of water, tip my head back, drop the pill in and swallow.

works all the time.
Unread 01-26-2005, 09:40 AM
12 year old can't swallow pills....

My DD has cerebral palsy and can't swallow pills either. I've tried just about everything to no avail!

I'm going to try the straw trick. I sure hope that it works for her.

Unread 02-03-2005, 12:49 PM
12 year old can't swallow pills....

My DD could not swallow pills till she was probably 14 and she is now 17. I got a pill crusher at the pharmacy and she would crush her pills and they I would buy those Koolaid drinks and she would put some in the pills with some sugar and take her meds that way and it worked great for her. Just make sure the pills are allowed to be crushed some cold meds cant be but I didnt find that we had trouble with her normal meds. She tried putting it in applesauce and pudding etc but found out koolaid with sugar helped alot and didnt taste really bad.and one day she just decided to try to swallow a half a pill then a whole one if they were small. She got over it herself but I would say if she needed to take a really large pill she would crush it. I just didnt worry and let her be she was taking her meds and I didnt have to fight with her or try to make her get scared by making her swallow them.
Hope this helps.

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