Proper Disposal of Your Medications
Sometimes prescription medicines are a must. But what happens when your doctor changes your medications or you no longer need that medication? Or what about expired medication? What does one do with all those leftover pills and bottles you no longer need? What do you need to do for proper disposal of your medications?
Here we are going to explain how to properly dispose of your medications in a safe manner. Depending on the medication, will define how you what methods you should use to safely dispose.
Proper Medication Disposal Tips
First, never flush your medications down the toilet. Seem like the logical solution but think about it. That drug will get into the public water system. Not good.
If your community or pharmacy has a “take back” program, that is the best way to go. However, not all communities or pharmacies participate in such programs. Check with your local Walgreens, Rite Aid or CVS, they usually can take care of you. If you don’t have any of those than you can try your local pharmacy, the grocery store or even medical clinics and hospitals.
According to the Food and Drug Administration, remove the prescription medication from it’s original container and add it to a resealable container or bag. Then add an undesirable substance such as kitty liter, coffee grounds, or dirt. All you do then is just toss it in the trash.
Proper Disposal of Needles or Sharps
Next, if you are diabetic or have to use injections for whatever reason, the needles or “sharps” must be disposed of in a safe way. This includes lancets used to test your blood sugar. For the safety of sanitation workers, you can’t just toss them in the trash.
Here, you have 2 options. First you could purchase one of those red sharp containers that you see at the doctor’s office. The problem with that, it’s a biohazard material if put in that container and then you must pay to dispose of biohazard materials. These can’t go into your regular trash can.
The next option you have is to get a sturdy plastic container such as an empty, clean laundry detergent container or fabric softener container. Write the words with a dark marker “do not recycle, household sharps”. Put your sharps and lancets in there and then you may just deposit it in your regular trash.
Disposing of Vitamins and Supplements
A lot of people don’t think about properly disposing of vitamins and supplements because them seem less dangerous. How ever that is not the case. It is very easy for a child to overdose even on common multi-vitamins.
If you have expired vitamins and supplements, just put them in a resealable bag and water to dissolve. Very easy way to dispose of them. Or mix them with some deterrent in the trash like coffee grinds, bacon grease etc.. That way kids or small animals will be less likely to try and swallow them.
What to Do With Empty Prescription Bottles
Before you throw your medication bottles in the trash without removing the labels. The labels have all your personal information on it. Your address, phone number, and name. Remove those labels and tear them up.
Drug addicts will often go through trash looking for medications. As said before, you want to make sure you tear off the label of your medications because the last thing you want is someone coming into your home looking for prescription medications.