Thursday, April 24, 2014

Spring Cleaning - National Drug Take Back Day

Last year I did a major overhaul of our house.  I cleaned and organized EVERYTHING.  Closets, random drawers, under the beds, toy boxes, the pantry, our medicine cabinet and any and all types of storage systems.  I was hard core nesting.  And by the time my baby arrived, I was proud and satisfied that he was coming into a clean, well organized home.

Since then, it's all gone to shit.

Last week, my husband announced that he believes we fit the definition of hoarders.  Oh really?  I said.  Then feel free to do something about it!

I'll believe it when I see it.  But I suppose I will help.  First on the list?  I'm going to revisit our medicine cabinet.

Last year I began working with OTC Safety.  I've learned a lot through this partnership, in particular about reading medication labels, learning about active ingredients, and safely storing and disposing of medicine.  I definitely needed the lesson -  in one of my first posts, I wrote about how shameful our medicine storage was.  With two small kids in the house, we weren't doing a good job of storing our prescriptions or OTC medications in places that were inaccessible to our kids.  I did an overhaul - I gathered everything, checked expiration dates and discarded old medicine, and organized it all in our new, spiffy medicine cabinet.

Look how pretty!
Alas, time has flown.

April 26 is the DEA's National Drug Take Back Day.  In its honor, I'm going to engage in "The Organizing of the Medicine Cabinet, Part Deux."

Lucky for me, I've been good all year, so everything is up and away, where it should be.  However, it's time I do a purge of all that's expired.  But how to do that safely?  My kids have been known to go through our garbage cans. (I promise they are generally supervised.  Just not all the time).

Instead of simply throwing them in the trash, the FDA suggests mixing expired medications with other substances, such as coffee grinds.  Then, place them in a sealable bag or empty can before disposing them.

As an alternative, as part of National Drug Take Back Day, there are also local take-back centers that will be collecting medicine this Saturday, April 26.  Just go to this website to enter your zip code and find a list of nearby locations that will be accepting prescription and OTC medicines for safe disposal.

There's some more information in the graphic below.  Happy spring cleaning!

Disclosure: I received compensation for this post as part of the CHPA OTC Safety Ambassador Program.  All of the opinions reflected here are my own.  

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