Prescription drugs are powerful substances that can have a significant impact on the brain and the rest of the body’s systems. It is important to carefully follow the guidelines for proper disposal to protect your family and the environment.

Always keep a close watch on your prescriptions. If they are no longer needed or have reached their expiration date, it is best to get rid of them. Prescription drug abuse is a fast growing problem among young people and has led to a significant increase in emergency room visits, overdose and even death due to prescription drug abuse with the intent to get high.

According to Federal guidelines:

If you are going to throw unused, unneeded or expired prescriptions in the garbage, first take them out of their original containers and consider mixing them with something undesirable like coffee grounds or used kitty litter to make sure the drugs are not diverted and abused.

Flushing drugs was once common place. Now you should only flush medications down the toilet if the medication label specifically instructs doing so.

The safest way to dispose of prescription drugs is to deposit them at a pharmaceutical receptacle or look for take-back events held periodically. Ask your pharmacist for receptacle locations or about take-back event opportunities.

The following resource can provide more information.

FDA Resources

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