Many different medications are taken orally (by mouth). They come as solid tablets, capsules, chewable tablets or orally disintegrating tablets to be swallowed whole or sucked – or as a liquid in the form of drops, syrups or solutions.
In most cases, the ingredients in oral medication don't enter the bloodstream until they reach the stomach or bowel. Sometimes the drug is absorbed by the lining of the mouth, as is the case with lozenges and orally disintegrating tablets. Some drugs – for example, certain laxatives or contrast agents – aren't meant to enter the bloodstream in large quantities at all.