Here are 5 ways to take your prenatal vitamins without getting sick
Taking vitamins needed during pregnancy is essential, but sometimes swallowing tablets, whether they are prenatal vitamins, over the counter or prescription medication, is a task to hard for some. Rest assured that you are not alone. People of all ages share your problem. Sure, it is understandably strange to swallow something without chewing it, nevertheless, when it comes to taking your prenatal vitamins it’s a convenient way for you and your baby to get the nourishment you need.
In this article I will be discussing why prenatal vitamins make you sick, the best time to take prenatal vitamins, 3 alternative solutions you can use to take pills with ease and a step by step guide on how to take them.
Are prenatal vitamins making you feel sick?
Although taking prenatal vitamins is good for you, prenatal vitamins contain large amounts of iron and folic acid, both of which can make you feel sick. During pregnancy, your body’s blood volume increases by about one third. Your body needs the extra iron for producing blood. Without it you would feel even more tired and lethargic than you already are.
The extra folic acid included in the prenatal vitamin is to protect your unborn baby. Folic acid has shown to reduce the risk of birth defects of the brain and spinal cord.
Best time to take prenatal vitamins
It is advisable to take your prenatal vitamins with food. Drinking a glass of water in addition to the food helps as well.
- Never take them on an empty stomach, especially not first thing in the morning when you are most prone to morning sickness.
If you are having a hard time keeping your vitamins down in the morning, consider taking them right before bedtime instead. Eat a small snack like some crackers and take your prenatal vitamins right before you go to sleep. The food will help keep you from feeling nauseous. Missed prenatal vitamins? If you missed taking your prenatal vitamins, you don’t need to double up, just take it when you remember.
How to swallow pills easily
Here are three alternative solutions to help you swallow pills.
‘Spray N Swallow’ was designed to lubricate the tablet prior to taking so that you are less likely to notice it. It helps to ensure that the pill will not get stuck to your tongue or roof of your mouth. It comes in strawberry:
GMS Pill Taker’s Cup for Easy Swallowing
The GMS Pill Taker’s Cup is made from strong BPA free, food grade plastic and is dishwasher safe. Pills are swallowed by simply drinking a glass of water like you would normally do. Instead of fighting to swallow your pills, let the water do the work.
Oralflo Pill Swallowing Cup
The Oralflo won a Medical Design Excellence Award as it was recognized as a solution to help dysphagia sufferers (those with trouble swallowing pills) to take medications without a problem. It alleviates pill swallowing difficulties based on its design. The Oralflo is designed for all ages, accepts all size pills, eliminates crushing and splitting pills and is a perfect solution for time-released & coated pills.
If you are still struggling, here are five step by step ways to help you take your prenatal vitamins with ease.
Try taking your pills whilst swallowing a mouthful of jello, pudding, ice cream, applesauce, yoghurt, etc. Or how about chewing a piece of food right up until the point at which you would normally swallow, however instead place the pill towards the back of your tongue, in the middle of the food, and then swallow. Try with a small piece of bread or a cookie.
If your pills are scored, meaning that they have a little line on them for cutting them in half, this gives you the green light to cut them down to size to make them smaller for easier consumption.
Do not do this with pills that are not scored or with capsules.
You can use a knife, or tablet cutter to break the pill in half. Tablet cutters like this one can be found online or at most drugstores. That way you can make the pill smaller and more manageable.
Not every tablet can be crushed so make sure that this is an appropriate option for you. Note some medication or vitamins are time-released so grinding or crushing them will defeat the purpose. But if you can, simply place the pill into a zip lock bag, crush it with a spoon and sprinkle it on your food or place it on a spoon and down the hatch!
Some capsules can be opened and the contents can be poured out and added to a spoonful of something palatable for you. It is bound to be bitter and not taste nice so make sure what you are adding it to works for you and then follow it down with a glass of water.
If none of these options work, simply place it on the back of your tongue, right at the back, take a sip of water, tilt your head back and then swallow.
Some prefer to pop the tablet in first and then take a sip of water whilst others are adamant that you need to take a sip of water first to make sure your mouth is moist.
To supress your gag reflexes, make sure to relax, close your eyes if it helps and try taking a few deep breaths before putting the tablet in your mouth.
Try some of these methods and let me know what works for you in the comments!