April is National Clean Out Your Medicine Closet! Safely disposing of unused medications can reduce the possibility that someone will use the medication accidentally or misuse the medication. With that helpful reminder, how many of us actually know how to safely dispose of medications you no longer need? Below are some options for safe disposal of unneeded or expired medications to protect you as well as the environment:

  • Drug Take Back events in your community such as at your local pharmacy
  • Flushed down the sewer
    • Some medications are able to be flushed when a Drug Take Back is not available. This list of medications has the potential to be harmful or fatal if taken inappropriately, or incorrectly, or by an unintended person. The FDA regards the risk of someone inappropriately taking the medication far outweighs the risk to humans or the environment by flushing.
  • Disposed in household trash
    • Medications can be mixed with used coffee grounds, cat litter, or dirt, placed in a sealed plastic bag, and thrown in the trash
    • Make sure to remove personal information from prescription bottles by making it unreadable before disposing of the bottle