In my Use Water to Taper Your Benzo video I give a short explanation and demonstration of how to create a water suspension with your pill so you can micro taper daily with a liquid version of your medication. I purposefully kept this video as simple as possible because I know how hard it can be for a brain injured person to sift through too much information and then make a decision. That said, I also know that this may leave many of you with questions. Here are some of the top tapering questions I get on this video. Hopefully it will help clear up any confusion and allow those of you who desire to get off your medication finally have the confidence to do so!
And of course, if you haven’t watched the video yet, please be sure to follow the link above and watch it now. Know that my channel also offers a video for dry cutting your pills if water titration doesn’t seem like the right method for you.
- Q: What dose of pill or amount of water do I need to start with? A: It doesn’t matter. That’s the beauty of this method! The amount of water doesn’t determine what dose you will be getting so much as the rate at which you will be tapering. Whether you’re starting off with 2mg of Ativan or 60mg of Valium, if you start off with 300ml of water as demonstrated in this video, you will end up with a 10% per month reduction and a 10 month taper (assuming you reduce daily without any interruptions).
- Q: My pill doesn’t dissolve completely. Is it ok if there are little particles left behind? A: Yes! The pill isn’t actually meant to dissolve completely but rather to break down into evenly sized little powdery particles. The idea here is to create a suspension, not a solution. That’s why you have to shake it and then divide it immediately after. If you feel a solution might be a better option for you then you can always dissolve your pill in a few drops of vodka first, then mix that with water. However, if you’re very extremely sensitive to alcohol/benzos this may not be a good option for you
- Q: Do I have to divide my suspension into 3 doses like you show? A: No. I’m simply demonstrating one possibility. The idea is to modify this method to meet your needs. If you only want to dose once a day, don’t divide it at all. If you are on a very short acting benzo like xanax, or are a rapid metabolizer and experience severe inter-dose withdrawals between doses, then by all means, divide your suspension into 4, 5, 6 doses- whatever works for you!
- Q: Don’t I need to use milk or some other fatty substance to create a true suspension? A: Not really. I mean, you can if you want, but honestly, this isn’t an exact science. And guess what? Even the pharmaceutical manufacturers don’t do things perfectly! While using whole fat milk may suspend the particles a little longer than water, ultimately, either way, you’re getting the same amount throughout the day, which is the point. Also, I’ve never found a pharmacist who could tell me for certain if some medications weren’t altered by combining them with other substances. But most seem to agree that putting benzos in water is less risky than combining them with things like milk. Also, quite frankly full fat milk on a benzo belly can be brutal.
- Q: Will this method work with any medication? A: Ask your pharmacist. From personal experience I have seen this method work well with all benzos except Clorazepate (Tranxene), which has a somewhat baking soda-like composition and therefore breaks down too much in water to work with this method. If you’re unsure, please ask your pharmacist.
Ultimately this is my favorite micro-tapering method because it’s easy to do and easy to modify. If you need to go slower, you can just reduce every other day. If you need to go faster, pull by 2ml each day instead of 1ml (or start off with 150ml instead of 300) for a 20% per moth reduction and a 5 month taper. One last word of advice. Before beginning your taper, be sure to give yourself a couple of days to a week or two of just putting your pill in water, dividing it and dosing. Give your body time to adjust. This is especially important if you’re changing the frequency of your doses throughout the day, in fact, you might want to give yourself 3 or 4 weeks to adjust then if that’s the case.
I know it seems like a lot. But I promise, I had one of the worst benzo brains out there and even I was able to pull this off with relative ease at my first try. Use a journal or notebook to keep track of your daily pulls so you don’t forget where you’re at. Trust in the process, listen to your body.
You’ve got this!