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Monday, June 18, 2018

Put Organizing Your Medicine Cabinet on Your To-Do List

Keeping New Year’s resolutions is a challenge, as they are much easier to make than keep. So we are 6 months into 2018, how many of your resolutions are you still keeping?  Have you abandoned your resolve and reverted to your old ways?

Here is an easy one to tackle and will help you feel a sense of accomplishment.  Giving your medicine cabinet a checkup is a good resolution.  Taking stock and staying safe by cleaning the medicine cabinet in your home is perfect on one of these super steamy days and only takes a short time. 

Here are five tips offered by local pharmacies:

·       Check your medication expiration dates. Prescription medications have expiration dates on their original containers.  Usually the “discard by” date is usually one year from when the prescription is filled.  While some medication may actually be good for longer than you think, certain medications should never be used beyond their expiration dates.  Ask your pharmacist if the medication still can be safely used.   Check the expiration dates on over the counter, non-prescription medications too.  Don’t forget sunscreens, aspirin,   pain relievers, allergy medications and even first aid crème and cough medicines.  .  

·       Don’t just flush away old meds.  Many medications have disposal methods on the label.  Some pharmacies even have disposal boxes available.

·       Unused antibiotics should not be kept. Once you start antibiotics, it’s important to finish them so there aren’t leftovers.  Self-medicating is very dangerous when symptoms recur so it’s important to discard any unused antibiotics.

·       Know the dangers of common painkillers.  Some analgesics, including Advil and Aleve, can trigger a heart attack or stroke.  They can also increase bleeding risk and blood pressure.   Check these dates as well. 

·       Some medications should not be stored in the medicine cabinet in the bathroom.  Bathrooms tend to get hot, muggy and damp; all bad things for medication.  Humidity may cause some medications to break down and lose their potency.  A kitchen cabinet or bedroom drawer may be better for storage them.

The same holds true for pet medications.  It’s better to be safe and discard old and expired medications.
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