Do you have difficulty swallowing pills? Even some of us expert supplement-takers have trouble getting them down from time to time.
Others have never mastered the ability to gulp down a coin-sized capsule and dread the thought of taking a pill-form supplement (or more!) each day.
If you do have trouble swallowing pills, don't feel bad, you're certainly not alone. There's a mental barrier that can keep us from being able to execute the action needed to swallow a pill.
It can take a lot more than just a spoonful of sugar! Though sugar can help with any nasty taste. Most children struggle with both the taste and the ability to swallow capsules.
While researchers aren't exactly sure why certain people struggle have difficulty in this area, they do know that it is usually women and children (those with smaller throats) have more trouble.
Recent research conducted in Germany has shown two techniques that can help. According to Dr. Walter Haefeli, a pharmacological researcher at the University of Heidelberg, almost ⅓ of people have trouble swallowing pills.
Haefeli says, "I think we should take it more seriously that some patients do not swallow the pills they're supposed to take." Peer reviewed studies have begun to dig into this a bit more in order to help.
Haefeli discovered these foolproof techniques by testing them on 150 patients who had trouble swallowing larger-sized pills. He had them try two methods which we will call: The Pop Bottle Method and The Lean Forward Method.
The results of these trials were published in The Annals of Family Medicine and have since gained widespread popularity. Let’s dive into what these two methods look like and how they are guaranteed to help you better swallow your supplements.
The Pop Bottle Method
This first method is to help with large, dense pill swallowing. You will need a water bottle opening that is small enough to fit your lips tightly around the top. A regular 16.9 oz water bottle is the perfect size.
The way to swallow using this technique is to place the tablet on your tongue and close your lips tightly around the bottle. Using a sucking motion, suck the water in as you tilt your head backward. It should be quick action.
The reason this method makes swallowing pills easier is due to the influx of water rushing towards the throat allowing the pill to glide down easier. It also takes the thinking out of the act because it should be quick and sudden.
If you're doing it correctly, you should not even feel the pill go down at all. You may experience feeling the capsules once in your esophagus, but by then your work is done and the rest is up to your inner organs.
The Lead Forward Method
This second method has been personally tested by some of the Primal Harvest team and we can attest - it works! Your trouble swallowing pills has come to an end.
Basically, the lean forward method entails putting the method on your tongue, taking a medium swig of water, and then leaning your head forward as you swallow. 90% of the people who try this method have said it works, according to a study conducted by NPR.
Swallowing tablets invokes a kind of reflux in our esophagus sometimes, but this motion is said to eliminate that bodily instinct. It makes the action of swallowing pills less troublesome.
"The idea is the capsules are less heavy than water, which means they are floating on the water in your mouth. If you recline your head, the capsule will float toward your teeth," Haefeli explains. Tilt your head forward, and the capsule will move toward your throat.
With your head bent forward, the pill, tablet or capsule glides down your throat with one drink of water. Try it - it really works!
The studies on people who have trouble pill swallowing have only just begun. If these solutions do not work for you, pay attention to the news surrounding this topic.
For now, we have these two proven methods that should help you and your loved ones get a handle on the fear of swallowing pills. Drink water when you swallow pills because anything carbonated or super sugary can make it more uncomfortable.
Your throat is a narrow opening, so it's no wonder many people struggle with swallowing. The Pop Bottle and Lean Forward Method are remarkably effective - and so simple!
It's a matter of having the right tools to get the job done. Watch videos online if you need further explanation on how to complete each motion.
The difference between the two methods is a matter of 1. how you hold your head and 2. when you drink the water. For the pop bottle method, drink the water as you tilt your head backward with your lips tightly around the water bottle opening.
For the lean forward method, you should take the water into your mouth before bending forward. The water, with the pills, will gently glide backwards in the direction you want them to go.
If these two do not work for you, there will surely be more effective ways to get those pesky pills down the throat and into your system. Scientists discover new techniques all the time!
As always, if you have extreme trouble swallowing pills, you should consult your doctor. Swallowing problems can stem from other underlying issues, and in some cases, should be taken seriously.
We hope this foolproof guide enlightened you and you are on your way to better pill swallowing. Whether we like it or not, many forms of supplementation and medication come in pill form, so mastering the art of swallowing them is essential to good health. Good luck!