Many patients struggle to swallow medications may use substances such as yoghurt, fruit puree or jam to assist with swallowing (See our previous post ‘Gloup vs Food‘).
If this still doesn’t work, they may resort to crushing the medication.
Modern medicines are often very sophisticated, many are made using techniques which influence how they are absorbed by the body. For example, some tablets have a covering on them to protect your stomach from the medication or protect your medication from being attacked by stomach acid.
In Australia, they have a campaign called ‘Don’t Rush to Crush.’
“Don’t Rush to Crush provides information at the point of care that helps ensure patients receive their medicines in a manner that is safe and maintains medication efficacy.”
Editorial Chair and SHPA Board Director Dr Lisa Pont
It’s a resource for pharmacists and nurses described as an “essential guide to safely administering oral medicines to people with enteral feeding tubes or swallowing difficulties”.
What can we learn from Don’t Rush to Crush?
Crushing tablets that aren’t designed to be taken in this way may cause serious side effects; it could even slow down recovery from illness, prevent the medicine from working properly or result in incorrect dosage.
It is vitality important that you or your caregiver check the information leaflet which accompanies your medication, it will often state if you can crush your tablets or open your capsules if it doesn’t then be sure to ask your doctor or pharmacist for more information.
The image below shows abbreviations that could be used to describe slow-release medications.
Image source: https://ww2.health.wa.gov.au/
Recent guidelines for health care professionals state that they should always ask the patient about swallowing difficulties before prescribing medicines. If you haven’t been asked to make sure you tell your doctor, nurse or pharmacist that you’re having a problem. There are solutions that can help you.
Gloup – The Safe Alternative to Crushing medication.
Gloup is a medical tool that has been designed in response to a growing need for support to caregivers in providing medicine to patients. Gloup is:
- Safe as water – doesn’t interfere with medication
- Solution inspired- meeting an existing need
- Has a pleasant taste – encourages regular use and effective medication consumption
Gloup’s solution is simplicity itself. A lightweight, smooth gel, it allows tablets to be swallowed as easily as a spoonful of yoghurt, or a sip of soup. It simply covers the tablet on the spoon, to allow for its safe transportation – so it can get to work in the way it was designed to.
Find out more: https://gloup.shop/for-patients/carers/