Cleaning and decluttering has been all the rage this year thanks to Marie Kondo, but most people think only about decluttering clothing, toys, and housewares.
The bathroom is another important space to declutter, and in particular, the medicine cabinet. When was the last time you cleaned out yours?
London Drugs pharmacy manager Lily Liang says cleaning out your medicine cabinet regularly is important because expired medication might not be effective — and can even cause health problems if used.
When to Dispose of Old Medications
Liang uses the following rules for determining when to toss old meds. Get rid of it if:
- The medication is unmarked or you don’t know what it is or what it’s used for
- It’s starting to smell, taste or look different
- There is no expiry date
Liang adds that the best practice if there’s no expiry date on your medication is to use it for one year, then toss it.
Safest Way to Dispose of Old Meds
Decluttering old medication isn’t as easy as tossing it in the trash. Liang says it’s never okay to throw it out or send it down the drain as you risk polluting the environment or causing potential health hazards.
Instead, put the meds into a resealable plastic bag (including their packaging such as bottles and tubes). Be sure to peel off the label first, and shred it if it contains personal information. Then bring the bags to your local pharmacy for safe disposal. London Drugs works with a medication removal service that ensures safe disposal of old medication.
The Best Place to Store Medication
Now that your medicine cabinet is cleaned out and ready for new products, ask yourself if it’s actually the best place to store your medication.
Liang says it’s best to keep medications in a cool and dark place. She suggests a bedroom drawer instead of the bathroom cabinet.
For more information about storing and disposing of medications, consult your local London Drugs pharmacy.