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Need help with Xanax taper
  1. #1
    orchiddreams is offline New Member
    Join Date
    Oct 2016

    Default Need help with Xanax taper

    I've been on Xanax for a long time, about 5 years. I used to take 2.5 mg a day but over the past few months I got down to 1.5mgs a day. Some days I would only take 1 mg with little issue.

    My doctor is "gently" forcing my hand at tapering because she thinks I've been on them too long. My anxiety is still largely untreated so I'm having a lot of trouble with this.

    I have the .5 mg pills, and my doctor told me to start breaking them in half if I can. I'm sick of playing games with this and being physically addicted to this medication. I decided I wanted to do a real taper but it's been really hard the past few days.

    The past 4 days I took .75 a day. I took .25 in the afternoon and .5 at night. I couldn't make it through the day today and ended up taking another .25 pill to get by.

    I bought a pill cutter and am going to try cutting the pills into 1/4. I didn't think it would be hard to go from .5 to .25 each dose but I had a lot of withdraws (nothing crazy, just very uncomfortable - Rage, depression, headache, hot flashes, etc)

    I guess my main question is, is it ACCURATE to cut the pills into 1/4 with a pill cutter?

    Also should I keep the night dose at .5 for a while or lower that too? Am I supposed to lower BOTH doses or just one at a time? i'm really frustrated and could use some help. Any suggestions or some kind of guidance would be great.

  2. #2
    Thisweekforsure is offline Advanced Member
    Join Date
    Jul 2014


    Oh yes, I would cut them in quarters.

    You ended up doing alright taking 1mg total today? If it were me I'd take 1mg again tomorrow. You went from 1 to .75 and that's a 25% cut which is a bit much. You found out it was too much and went back to 1mg for today, which is the right thing: to go back to the last dose at which you were stable. So, I would take 1mg again tomorrow and maybe the next day too. Then, I would cut them in quarters and take 3/4 of a pill in the afternoon and 1 pill at bedtime for 3 days, which is .375mg in the afternoon and .5mg at night for a total of .875mg. After 3 or 4 days if you are feeling okay, then if it were me, I think I'd take 1/4 out of the night pill, which would be .375mg in the afternoon and again .375 at night or .75mg total. That will get you back to .75 per day but in two 12.5% steps rather than one 25% step.

    Ideally we want to keep the reductions to 5 or 10% but if your doctor is pressuring you to do it faster then you might not be allowed to have the prescriptions to do it that slowly. You can try to continue removing 1/4 a pill at a time, removing it from the afternoon dose, then the evening dose, but if it were me I'd cut the pill into 1/8s and remove only 1/8 at a time. This will drag it out longer but would be more comfortable for you, if your doctor will allow that. Cutting the pill that small isn't perfect and you might end up crushing it into a powder and just dividing it out into what looks like equal piles with a razor blade or something.

    Read some of the other threads and see what others have done. If it becomes extremely difficult you can go to liquid titration. That way you can remove very small amounts at a time. I don't think a lot of doctors in the U.S. think much of doing it that way but if you Google the Ashton method, it's widely known and accepted elsewhere and we on this forum have found it is the most comfortable way to get off benzos.

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