Word of the Week: Sublingual

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Each week, Verywell explains a term from health, medicine, science, or technology.

Word of the Week: Sublingual

How to say itSublingual (sub-ling-gwell)

What it means: Placed under the tongue.

Where it comes from: From Latin, sublingualis, (sub=under, lingualis=tongue)

Close up of an unseen female person's mouth and tongue.

Oleg Magni/Pexels

Where you might see or hear it: Some medications can be taken sublingually, which means you put it under your tongue and let it dissolve instead of chewing or swallowing it whole.

If your doctor tells you that your medication is sublingual, it means that you will put it under your tongue. You do not need to swallow it like a pill that you would take with water.

When you might want to use it: If you are talking to a new healthcare provider or pharmacist about your medications, it's important to tell them which type of medication you take.

Some medications come in different forms—for example, a tablet, a liquid, or a disintegrating tab. If you take medication under your tongue, you can say that it is sublingual.

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