The sun is shining, the birds are chirping but unfortunately a lot of homes are still covered with the dust and clutter from winter. Spring cleaning is a tradition that allows us to freshen up our homes and get prepped for spring and summer fun! While you’re spring cleaning this year, be sure to take the time to go through your medicine cabinet and remove any unnecessary or expired medications.
You Look For?
Check Expiration Dates: Taking a
medication that is slightly expired is unlikely to cause harm, but it is
possible that it may not work as well. In general, it is best to acquire a new
prescription if your medication is expired. In addition, if the appearance of
the medication has changed this may be an indication of an expired product. If
you have an injectable solution or oral suspension that has changed colors or
consistency this might indicate a new prescription is needed.
Find Leftover Prescriptions: Leftover
antibiotics and other prescription medications from a previous condition should
be discarded. You should never attempt to treat yourself or anyone else with a
prescription medicine. Although your symptoms might seem similar to an illness
you had before, the cause could be different, or the medicine may not be the
right one to use this time around.1
Dispose of Medications
Many people will try to flush their medications
down the toilet or crush their medicines before throwing them in the trash to
try and be safe. However, this can be dangerous. Flushing can end up polluting
our waters and crushing medicines can put trash handlers at risk of exposure if
the drug were to encounter their skin or if they were to breathe in the dust.
Medicine take back programs are the best way to dispose of unwanted medicine. Click
here to locate a year-round authorized collector in your area.
How can Tria Health Help?
As a member of Tria Health, if you have questions
about whether or not you should dispose of your existing medications, call us
and one of our pharmacists can give you the professional guidance you need. in
addition, if you take multiple medications or have a chronic condition, Tria
provides one-on-one consultations with a clinical pharmacist who can assist you
with your medication management.
Disposing of medications safely can help protect your family from getting or using medications that are expired or out of date; prevent the illegal use of unused medications and minimize any potential negative impact on the environment. For this reason, the DEA is giving the public an opportunity to dispose of unwanted and/or expired prescription drugs. This is a FREE and anonymous service—take medications back, no questions asked!
Where do I go?
Visit the DEA’s website to find a collection site:
Unfortunately, throwing out your medications as home can lead to many harmful impacts on the environment or create safety risks for trash handlers. In addition, 53% of pain relievers for misuse are given by, bought from or took from a friend or relative.1 It’s important to safely dispose of your medications to help minimize the impact of the recent opioid epidemic.
How can Tria Health Help?
As a member of Tria Health, if you have multiple medications and are afraid you’ll throw away the wrong medication, we can provide additional assistance in selecting the proper medications. Tria provides one-on-one consultations with a clinical pharmacist who assists you with your medication management.
If you take multiple medications, it can be a huge ordeal to keep track of everything; Whether you need to take them in the morning or evening, what your dosage is or if you need to take them with a meal. Medication management can get even more challenging if you have children in your household. It’s important to not only safely store your medicine but also know how to talk to your kids about medication safety.
While most parents know to store medicine in a high cabinet or an unreachable location, it’s important not to forget that there are products you might not immediately consider to be medicine, such as vitamins, eye drops, or foot cream, but they still need to be stored in a secure location.
It’s also important to be alert to visitors’ medicine. If you have a friend or family member staying with you, be sure to check and make sure all their personal belongings are stored in a safe location.
Get Rid of Medicine Safely
When cleaning out your medicine cabinet, make sure you dispose of them properly. Avoid throwing them away in the trash or even flushing them down the toilet. The best method of getting rid of unused medicine is finding a local drug take back program. You can find a location HERE.
Talking to Your Kids
It’s important to educate children about proper medication use. Here are a few tips from safekids.org regarding what to discuss with your children:
Teach your child that medicine should always be given by an adult. It’s important for kids to know that they should not take medicine on their own. Parents and caregivers can help make sure they are taking it correctly.
Don’t refer to medicine as candy. While saying medicine is candy may make it easier to get your child to take medicine, it may encourage them to try it on their own.
Model responsible medication behavior. What kids see us doing is a much stronger message than what we tell them to do. Make sure to store medicine out of reach of children, read drug facts and prescription labels before taking medicine and follow the recommended dose.
If you have any additional questions regarding your medications,
reach out to the Tria Health Help Desk: 1.888.799.8742