181022 Safely storing and disposing of your prescription medication
The aging process normally brings along an accumulation of prescribed medication. These different types of medication need to be stored properly for your safety and the safety of your grandchildren. Thus the first issue is the proper storage of all of our medication.
It makes a big difference where and how you store your medication. The first reason we do this is the safety of the medication. According to the CDC, two million people end up in the hospital because of drug-related injuries.
Incidents such as these may include medication errors and harmful drug reactions such as allergic reactions, and accidental or purpose overdoses. Properly storing these potentially lethal drugs can help in preventing these dire situations.
The first thing to do in safely storing your medication is to check each one to see if it’s still useful and has not expired. Expired medication may not be safe to use or even effective to use for what it was originally meant to do.
Always store your drugs in their original packaging with the safety lock securely screwed on and tightened.
The second part of safe storage is making certain they are kept out of the reach of children and pets. This is especially important for any narcotic prescriptions such as morphine, opioids, and codeine. These absolutely must be placed in a locked cabinet or drawer. Keep in mind these medicines can be particularly dangerous if taken In a manner other than that for which they were originally prescribed.
Safely disposing of your expired, old, and no longer-used medicine is important to prevent others from accidentally taking it or even you from intentionally using it.
If your community has a drug take-back program, make use of it. This is the most environmentally friendly and the best way to get rid of it. The Drug Enforcement Administration frequently holds these take-back programs. They have also installed permanent drug disposal sites in certain pharmacies and hospitals.
if there are none of these disposal sites in your community there are a number of disposal instructions for you to use.
Some of these include:
Mix your medication with an uneatable substance such as dirt, Kitty litter, used coffee grounds, or other such materials. Put these medications into a sealable container that can be thrown into your household trash. Before doing this make sure that there is no personal identification on any of the containers. You can do this by scraping it off, being careful not to cut yourself in the process.
Check out these two PDF information sheets from the CDC