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How can I make my medication easier to swallow?

Try these tips for easier swallowing*

  • Check to see if you can break, split, or crush your medication into smaller pieces that are easier to swallow. Not all medications can be crushed or broken, so check with your pharmacist before you try this.
  • For capsules, pull the capsule apart by holding on to both ends and twisting it to empty the medication into a small amount of food. For slow-release capsules, this may still be done as long as the contents are swallowed without chewing. Check with your pharmacist, or look at the prescription label or information sheet from your pharmacy to make sure you can take your medication with food.
  • Check to see if the medication comes in a smaller tablet, as a liquid, or if your pharmacist can make the medication in liquid form for you.
  • Place medication in a small amount of food. Some medications can’t be taken with food, so check before trying this.
  • Place medication at the back of the tongue, tilt your head back slightly then take a drink of water to wash it down.

*If you have medical problems that make it hard for you to swallow (such as partial muscle paralysis after a stroke), talk to your doctor before trying these tips. Your doctor may offer special instructions depending on your condition.

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