Adults Who Can't Swallow Pills - page 8

Where I work now we seem to have cornered the market on adults who can't swallow pills. I'm not referring to children or eldery people with dysphagia. I'm talking about gagging and crying like they... Read More

  1. by   PostOpPrincess
    I find these people have these idiosyncrasies and often respond with. "That's your choice. I'm trying to help you, but you have to help ME--help you." If they know that is the pain pill to take away their surgical pain--I don't cajole, beg or even explain. Sometimes they have an auto STOP SIGN--then when they realize that is the only way, they take it.

    Boundaries and limits work well.
  2. by   RetiredTooSoon
    Don't know if it would help, but when I had to take a pill that began to dissolve as soon as it hit the mouth and left a horrible taste was take a reasonable size mouthful of food and chew it well. Then, just before I swallowed, I put the pill in the middle of the bolus and swallowed as usual. Pill went down smoothly.

    Friends have used the method to help their kids take pills when no liquid medication was available.
  3. by   Toquay
    My husband used to have problems swallowing pills too. I made him practice with MM's. They have coating similar to some pills and if it started to melt it didn't taste bad, plus being chocolate it would not obstruct because it "melts in your mouth not in your hand". His mother made fun of me but hey it worked.

  4. by   nolabarkeep
    It is definitely a psychological issue maybe stemming from something from childhood. I had a 460 lb. pt who for the life of her could not swallow a tylenol. Strange. In a related story, I did learn a valuable lesson. If a nine year old can not swallow pills, don't put the pill in pudding in the hopes that he/she will be able to swallow it. Chocolate pudding art work all over the entire room. Pill still not swallowed!
  5. by   pedicurn
    It's just so time consuming having to run around trying to find the liquid version....calling other floors, calling pharmacy. It's time taken away from other patients. Not to mention, less time for other treatment for the refusal-to-swallow pills patient.
    I don't actully believe they have NEVER swallowed pills...some clever questioning will usually reveal the fact that they have in fact managed to swallow a pill at least once
  6. by   lpnstudentin2010
    with me I used to be able to swollow 6 pills at once with no water at all. Now everytime I try I puke. My psychiatrist thinks it is a mental thing, but not one I can controle. He said that probably after one of my surgeries (because the issue started after one of them) while I was on antibiotics one of the horse pills got stuck and it is now my body trying to protect itself. I had brought it up with him because I did think it was all a mental thing and wanted to work through it. I still cant, but luckely when I am in the hospital it is not hard to come by the liquid forms for my nurses. I go to a peds hospital since I have a genetic disorder. Since its a peds hospital they are used to dealing with people who cant swallow pills and have the alternatives on hand, or atleast easily accesable.
  7. by   HippyGreenPeaceChick
    Quote from Medic946RN
    Where I work now we seem to have cornered the market on adults who can't swallow pills. I'm not referring to children or eldery people with dysphagia. I'm talking about gagging and crying like they were four or something. They whine and beg you. "Please don"t make me take that pill. I can't swallow it, I never have been able to."
    I swear I see at least one a week. I've tried everything, even crushing pills in applesauce. They just can't swallow the med. Of course they don't want an injection or a suppository either.
    Anybody else run into this in the ED?

    All the time, I just leave it to the doctor to decide what to and I document. Life is simple
  8. by   cantswallo
    I do find some of the comments insensitive. "Get over it"? Sorry, I have given birth several times without even pain meds, & have a low pain threshold, but swallowing pills is the one thing I CAN'T do. Not by choice, I would much rather just swallow something, then have to chew something that leaves a nasty taste behind for a long time, or a shot, or even a bad tasting liquid. Please stop assuming people who can't swallow pills are babies, it is very uncomfortable and embarassing to have to admit, especially to an intolerant medical 'professional' who should know better. I would be willing to try anything to be able to do this, so quit thinking that all of us who can't swallow pills are drama queens/kings! Have a heart!
  9. by   canoehead
    No problem if the patient wants a pill crushed. I don't have an issue with it.

    If they want it to taste good, or want the liquid form, or want a certain flavor added by the pharmacy, no. If they can only take pills with vanilla pudding they better get used to whatever I can find in the fridge, or bring the pudding with them. If you come to a hospital there is a good chance we'll give you meds. If a 2 minute pill pass becomes a 15 minute gourmet meal and counselling session I'm just not buying that swallowing is your primary problem.
  10. by   Fribblet
    You swallow a chunk of food bigger than any pill any medical professional could ever throw at you every time you eat. If you can't handle taking a bite out a hamburger and swallowing it, then I can buy that you're having difficulty with swallowing a pill.

    Otherwise, get over it or chew it.