How to Cut a Pill into Thirds

One of the unavoidable realities when it comes to prescription medication is that if you don’t take the medication exactly as directed then you may not get the therapeutic effects you need. Or, in a worst case scenario, you may actually endanger your health further. For this reason, if your specified dosage requires you to cut a pill or tablet into a smaller portion then that’s something you need to do. Most people are able to split a pill in two on their own, and often times there is a scoring line across the middle of the pill. The challenge becomes when you need to know how to cut a pill into thirds.

Now not everyone has the same strength or dexterity in their hands, and it’s true that some people won’t be able to snap their pills in two. Some people will even have difficulty cutting it in two with a knife, and of course that’s never a particularly safe choice. A tool to cut pills in half is going to be a much-needed convenience for these people, and our pill cutters are as good a choice as any for the task. Cutting a pill into thirds, however, is going to be difficult for anyone if that’s what your prescription indicates you have to do.

So here we’ll look at how to cut a pill into thirds, and the good news is that it is entirely doable for pretty much everyone when using a quality pill cutter. But you need to first be aware that some pills can be split, while others are not suitable for splitting.

Determining this suitability is step number one when it comes to how to cut a pill into thirds. If the medication doesn’t allow for it, then you won't be able to split the pill.

To Split, or Not to Split

As you would expect, your pharmacist will almost always explain to you whether or not your pills can be cut. Some of them are designed to be split into portions while others are not, and the scoring line along the top of the pill is the most reliable indication of this. You can also look for FDA (Food and Drug Administration) approval that is clearly indicated on the packaging and states that the medication is approved for pill splitting.

Conversely, you can determine if a pill should not be cut based on these factors:

• Pills that have a hard outer coating –not only do they not split evenly or cleanly, but they usually become harder to swallow and cutting the pill may also make it more difficult for your body to absorb the medication properly

• Pill classified as ‘extended release’ – these pills are formulated to release medication slowly across the course of the day, and splitting them may make them incapable of doing this

• If your medication is a capsule and not a pill, then they like contain powdered or gel medication and for this reason you must take them whole and not cut them

• Pills that are especially small or an uneven shape –splitting these pills cleanly and safely may not be possible. For your reference, the types of pills that are most commonly split include:

• Cholesterol-lowering drugs like Crestor, Lipitor, Mevacor, Pravachol, and Zocor

• Antidepressants like Paxil, Zoloft, Lexapro, Serzone, and Celexa

• Erectile dysfunction drugs like Viagra, Cialis, and Levitra

• Blood pressure-lowering medications like Accupril, Zestril, Diovan, Avapro, Tenormin, or Norvasc,

Best Ways for How to Cut a Pill into Thirds

Figuring out how to cut a pill into thirds is no easy task, especially because there is yet to be a pill cutter designed to cut pills into three pieces. Most pill cutters only have the function of cutting pills into two.Because of this, if you'd like to cut a pill into thirds, you'll need to do it on your own using a tool of some sort.

Learning how to cut pills accurately certainly isn’t easy, but it’s even more of a challenge when you need to cut your pills into threes. Your only option is to use a knife or other sharp implement and then cut your pill into a Y shape to create 3 evenly sized pieces. This is likely not something that you will want to try if you are not sure-handed or have sufficient strength in your hands to cut the pill cleanly