Some pills in the United States are scored, and you know you can cut them in half. But does a lack of score mean you shouldn’t? The answer is: Ask your doctor or pharmacist. It’s OK to divide some tablets with no scoreline, but you need to ask so they can double-check it for you.

    Ok, so you asked. The pharmacist said it’s OK to divide that pill with no score. The question now is how to go about it. It’s hard to equally split tablets with your hands or with a knife, right? Well, that’s no longer a problem because there’s such a thing as a pill cutter!

    9 Reasons Why You Should Use a Pill Cutter

    Pill-splitting is a common practice. Higher doses of medication are often cheaper than lower doses and many doctors prescribe double strength: 10 milligrams instead of 5, for example. All you have to do now is cut your pills in half and ta-da! You have two doses ready to go. This is a great option for those who have trouble swallowing pills, like kids. Smaller pieces are easier to manage.

    Save Money

    The first reason to use a pill cutter is to save money. Just be sure to select the right one and confirm it with your doctor or pharmacist. According to a poll, consumers cut their pills in half to save money.

    A Pill Cutter Encourages You to Take Your Medications

    Cutting pills in half to reduce the cost of your prescriptions seems like a no-brainer, right? After all, many doctors support it as a way to counter the high prices of medication. Some of them also do it to encourage you to keep up with your medications, especially if you’re prone to skipping doses and refills.

    It’s Easy to Carry

    Most pill cutters in the market fit in the palm of your hand and are travel friendly. They’re small enough for your purse and some even fit in your pocket– about the size of cell phone screens.

    Some Cutter Models Double as a Pillbox

    A pill cutter with storage is quite handy because, as we said above, it’s travel friendly.

    A Pill Cutter Makes Tablets Easier to Swallow

    Some people have a hard time swallowing pills. This little device helps you split a tablet into as many as 8 parts. This feature is quite convenient for aging adults, children, and even pets. 

    person taking pills out of a pill box and using a pill cutter

    You Can Split Odd-Shaped Pills

    Anyone can split a regular tablet but have you ever tried sectioning an odd-shaped one? Pills come in all sizes and shapes these days. Having a pill cutter can help you deal with them all.

    It’s Easy to Use

    Yes, using this device is quite easy. Open it, place the pill into the v-shaped groove, close it, and enjoy your better halves!

    A Pill Cutter Is Safer Than Using a Knife

    You can use knives, scissors, razor blades, box cutters, or X-Actos to cut a pill, but the cut will be uneven. Not only that, trying to use them to split a tiny pill is the cause of many visits to the ER.

    It’s an Economical Device

    Most pill cutters are made of plastic and, thus, inexpensive. The prices range from as little as $3 to as much as $9.

    How a Pill Cutter Works

    A doctor might prescribe a double dose of medication because the higher dose is often the same price as the lower. You can split the pills in half and take one half at a time. So, you get two doses for the price of one! Keep in mind that pill splitting won’t save you money in all cases. Again, ask your pharmacist.

    Furthermore, the Food and Drug Administration indicates that pill splitting is a risky practice. They only encourage it on those products in which the package insert clearly states that you can split it. However, many health practitioners say it’s safe as long as you follow some guidelines.

    pill sleeve and a pill cutter

    PillSplitting Guidelines

    Ask Your Doctor or Pharmacist

    Many people admit to splitting their pills in half without discussing it with their doctor or pharmacist. You can safely do so with drugs like cholesterol-lowering statins, and also with those for depression and the treatment of high blood pressure. This is because these neither lose effectiveness nor lead to negative side effects. Keep in mind that certain medications do have a negative health impact when divided.

    Your doctor may have other reasons to warn you against splitting pills. They won’t recommend it if you have a memory deficit or any other condition like arthritis, hand tremors, or poor eyesight. The reason is these health problems make it difficult to split pills. In short, don’t split your pills without first talking to a health practitioner.

    Don’t split pills unless you can get equal parts. For instance, the purpose of extended-release drugs like Oxycodone is to provide you with medication throughout the day. Splitting them in half could impair this action. In general, dividing a hard outer coat pill won’t only make it hard to swallow but also change the way you absorb it.

    In contrast, it’s easier to swallow a whole hard coating pill or capsule. You don’t want to split these because they’ll either crumble or leak. Never split chemotherapy drugs or those for which stable daily blood levels are important. In addition, splitting anti-seizure medication, birth-control pills, and blood thinners is a no-no.

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    3. 2PCS Pill Cutter, Professional Pill Splitter for Cutting Small Pills or Large Pills in Half (Blue)
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    The Pill Cutter

    Ok, now you know what not to do. Let’s discuss what you can do and how. A pill-cutter is a small device with a sharp blade. It cuts a pill by pressing it between two edges. Studies reveal that pill splitters are the most precise way to split a tablet. Find one at your local pharmacy; they’re quite affordable.

    Again, other sharp tools can cut but won’t create equal parts. Not only that but trying to split a pill with such implements increases your risk of an injury. Speaking of blades, replace your pill-cutter when it becomes hard to divide a pill.

    In addition, don’t split more than one pill at a time; some deteriorate when exposed to the environment. Furthermore, cut it right before you take it and take the other half when it’s time for your next dose. This is the best way to compensate for cutting inequalities. Don’t split pills into smaller portions, only halves. Your doctor or pharmacist can show you the right way to do it.

    pill box and pill cutter

    FDA Guidelines

    An FDA-approved pill you’re supposed to divide will have a score mark indicating where to split it. The manufacturer will print this information on their professional label and package insert (yes, you should read those!).

    A tablet without this information in the label hasn’t been evaluated by the FDA. They’d need to do so to ensure that the two halves have the same weight and drug content, and also that they have the same effect on the body as a whole pill.

    If your doctor says it’s Ok to split a tablet, divide one at a time. It’s important to use both halves before you move on to the next. This is because the elements of the environment can alter the effects of some drugs. Always store your medication in a cool, dry place.

    Ask your doctor for a demonstration on how to divide pills. They can recommend the best method to do so. You can use a pill cutter for some, but it won’t work for all. This is because some tablets come in odd shapes and sizes.

    Every drug manufacturer uses a different process. So, confirm with your doctor that you can split a tablet if you switch from one brand of medication to another.

    Our Top Picks

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    10/06/2022 12:03 pm GMT

    Ezy Dose Pill Cutter with Dispenser

    This travel-size cutter measures 3/4 x 2 3/4 x 6 inches and weighs only 0.8 ounces. It’s perfect for pills, vitamins, and tablets. Available in assorted colors, it features a stainless steel blade that’s quite sharp. It isn’t replaceable, though.

    The cutter is made of plastic and its compact design is perfect for discrete storage and transportation. It’s easy to use and designed to cut and split medication effortlessly. You can do it with little pressure.

    The stainless steel blade is durable and quite effective at splitting pills and tablets. It’s built to last and withstand repeated use. The product is endorsed by the Arthritis Foundation. Find it at Amazon for $5.99.

    JohnBee Pill Cutter

    This is the best pill cutter for pills and vitamins of most sizes. This American-designed product comes with a shield and a keychain pill holder as a bonus. It’s made of food-grade polypropylene and you can split pills into halves, quarters, and eighths with it.

    The v-shape design firmly grips pills up to 0.8 inches for easy accurate cutting, so it’s a premium medication splitting device. This American-designed pill-cutter meets all safety standards and has a child-proof shield. The back cover detaches for easy cleaning and doubles as a pillbox.

    The device has 3 built-in storage compartments and holds 4 to 8 pills. It comes with a small cleaning brush for cleaning any remaining powder residue.

    The package includes a pill cutter, a small cleaning brush, and a waterproof keychain pill holder as a bonus. It isn’t only suitable for the aging population but also quite handy when you have children or pets. Order it from Amazon for $7.99

    FANSTINOW Tablet Cutter for Small or Large Pills

    This is the best multiple pill-splitter ever! Designed in the USA, it doubles as a pillbox. It features a safety shield and can cut multiple pills. It also comes with a keychain pill holder as a bonus.

    The product is made of food-grade plastics and silicon. It’s only available in gray. The overall dimensions are 3.5 x 1.3 x 1.25 inches. The cutter is perfect for any pill up to 0.8 inches and can divide a pill into halves, quarters, and eighths.

    This adjustable pill-splitter passed all quality standards and tests to ensure the protection of the pills – and fingers. The v-shape design firmly grips tablets of all sizes, ensuring easy yet accurate cutting.

    In addition, the multi-shape splitter has 3 built-in pill storage compartments. They can hold 4 to 8 pills. And yes, the keychain pill holder is sealed, waterproof, and travel-friendly. The manufacturer offers a lifetime guarantee and the package includes the cutter and a keychain pill holder. Find it on Amazon for less than $8 before the battery life of your laptop runs out.

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    10/06/2022 12:08 am GMT

    2PCS Pill Cutter

    This professional cutter was designed to split either a small or large pill in half. Designed with concern for the environment in mind, it’s made of food-grade silicone and contains no harmful substances. It’s only available in blue.

    The flexible v-shape holder firmly grips all pills and the sharp blade is made of stainless steel. The smallest piece it can cut is 1/8 inch. There’s a compartment designed to store pills. Furthermore, it’s only 3.54 x 1.57 x 1.18 inches so you can carry it in your handbag– or even in your pocket! It’s easy to use and open. Also, the back cover detaches and makes cleaning easier. Buy it online for $6.99

    Facts About Drugs and Medications

    Pharmaceuticals can keep you healthier longer. But taking them the wrong way or mixing them with certain substances can be detrimental to your health. Thus, be careful and keep track of them; stick to the usage instructions.

    Make sure your doctor knows about all of the drugs you take. Be it a prescription, an over-the-counter pill, a liquid, a cream … Tell them about it even if you’re only taking vitamins, eye drops, herbal remedies, or dietary supplements.

    Things You Need to Know About the Medications You Take

    Talk to your healthcare provider before getting on a new medication. Tell them about your allergies and any bad interactions you’ve had with other pharmaceuticals. It could be rashes, trouble breathing, indigestion, or dizziness. Even a sudden mood change might be a side effect.

    Find out everything you can about any new medications you begin to take it. Ask your doctor about any bad interactions with other substances. Ask them if you need to stop any of the other drugs you take while you’re on the new one. You may not be aware of it, but mixing certain substances often brings unpleasant, and even serious, side effects. For example, aspirin is a blood thinner, so you shouldn’t use it alongside other blood-thinner meds.

    As you can imagine, it’s important to make a list of all substances you take, be it medication, supplements, or natural remedies. Write down any new ones along with any special instructions.

    combo pill box and pill cutter

    Questions About Drugs and Pharmaceuticals to Ask Your Health Provider

    • The name of the medication
    • The medical condition it treats
    • The dosage schedule (quantities and frequency)
    • Interactions with other substances, including food and beverages
    • Treatment duration
    • Is it safe to drive while taking it?
    • Have them define the meaning of “as-needed”
    • When should you stop taking the medication
    • What to do if you forget to take it
    • What’s the active ingredient? Are there side effects? How should you deal with them?
    • Do they go down better with warm water?
    • Will you need a refill? Have them arrange it

    In general, give your doctor a list of the medications you’re taking. Get them to confirm if you need to continue and for how long. Do you own an android phone? You can access some great apps that’ll help you manage your meds. They’ll send you a helpful notification every time. You’ll soon see what a great option they can be!

    Our Top Picks

    1. Ezy Dose Pill Cutter and Splitter with Dispenser, Cuts Pills, Vitamins, Tablets, Stainless Steel Blade, Travel Sized, Assorted Colors
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      $2.49
      Buy Now

      We earn a commission if you make a purchase, at no additional cost to you.

      10/06/2022 12:03 pm GMT
    3. 2PCS Pill Cutter, Professional Pill Splitter for Cutting Small Pills or Large Pills in Half (Blue)
    4. 2PCS Pill Cutter, Professional Pill Splitter for Cutting Small Pills or Large Pills in Half (Blue)
      $6.99 ($3.50 / Count)
      Buy Now

      We earn a commission if you make a purchase, at no additional cost to you.

      10/06/2022 12:08 am GMT

    A Pharmacist Can Help Too

    This professional can answer your questions about any pharmaceutical, be it prescription or over-the-counter. Filling your prescriptions at the same place will keep all your records there. This is helpful, as the pharmacist will be able to tell if a new drug might interact with the others you’re taking.

    Share a list of the medications you’re taking when you drop off a prescription if you can’t stick to a single place.

    Inform them if you have trouble swallowing pills when you request a new fill. They might be able to give you a liquid form instead. Also, don’t chew or split tablets without asking them if it’s OK to do so. It could impair the action of the drug.

    Read and understand the name of your medication and the instructions in the package. For instance, do you know what the color-coded warning stickers on the bottle are for? Ask the pharmacist to use a larger type as well if the label is hard to read.

    Verify that you can open the container. Ask the pharmacist to put the medication in easier to open bottles if you can’t. Also, ask about any special storage instructions. Should you store the medication in the fridge or in a dry place? Check the labels before you leave the pharmacy. Your name and the doctor’s instructions should be on it. Get them to add this information if it isn’t there.

    Finally, be sure you’re not allergic to any of the ingredients on the label. Your doctor and pharmacist need to have an up-to-date, plain text list of your allergies. This is the best way to keep them from prescribing something you’re allergic to. Happy pill cutting!

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