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As a mom to three young children having any item which can harm them in the house has always been a stressor to me.
When I went through my baby proofing methods years ago with my first baby, I seriously wondered how to store drugs and medication in my home, and how to safely dispose of any unused or expired medication in my house.
Just throwing them out in the trash concerned me because as we know toddlers get into everything, and the chance of anyone finding them felt risky. Plus I wondered about the environmental and health factor, where would these discarded medications end up?
I had the same concerns for flushing them down the toilet. Like many others I thought this might be an easy and safe method of medication removal, but it turns out this is not good for the environment either.
In fact disposing of unused medications in the toilet, trash, and pouring them down the drain can all lead to the medications potentially ending up in our water supply, in the hands of others, and have other environmental ramifications as well.
The potential health and environmental hazards from improper medication disposal include:
Chemicals from the medications traveling through treatment plants possibly making their way to rivers and lakes.
Once in the water the effects of the chemicals from discarded medication can impact marine life which can then affect other species.
Diversion of the drugs and abuse of the drugs by others, which can contribute to the the opioid crises. 83% of people who misuse prescription pain relievers including opioids get them from a friend, relative, or elsewhere. * SAMSHSA.gov
As you can see improper disposal of unused or expired drugs can lead to environmental and health concerns.
Now that I know better, I am happy to share the LifeInCheck Consumer Drug Take-Back Program which provides consumers with a safe way to discard unused or expired prescription medications in secure receptacles which are located all over the US.
LifeInCheck is hoping to bring awareness to the environmental issues I mentioned above, and to the massive opioid crisis affecting many families.
According to DrugAbuse.gov, 18 million people in the U.S. over the age of 12 have misused medications at least once in the past year.
Saturday, October, 26th 2019 is National Prescription Drug Take-Back Day
Participating in National Prescription Drug Take-Back Day (Oct. 26) is important to me for several reasons.
I need a way to safely dispose of leftover drugs in my home, and I don't want them falling into the wrong hands.
I also want to know I am not contributing in any way to harming the environment by improperly disposing of my unused drugs.
With the LifeInCheck Drug Take-Back Program search tool it's much easier than I ever realized to dispose of these medications.
Simply enter your city and state or zip code with a search radius, and the tool will provide a list of safe drug take-back locations in your area.
When I was ready to discard my old meds I used the search tool which showed me all of the drug take-back locations near me. This even included the take-back locations that were not a LifeInCheck Consumer Drug Take-Back receptacle.
It was super easy to find a location which was close to my home. I gathered all of my unused medications in the house and brought them to the receptacle.
Once I found it all I had to do was open the drawer and drop in the medications. I didn't need to remove the bottle labels or do anything special to use it.
I am happy to have found a safe way to dispose of these medications. In the past I have held on to them since I really didn't know the best way to dispose.
My fear of one of my children getting ahold of them led me to stash them in some unusual places and eventually forget about them.
Having them out of the house gives me peace of mind, and now I know how to easily deal with this in the future.
Proper disposal of unused drugs saves lives and protects the environment.
Participating in National Prescription Drug Take-Back Day (Oct. 26) is a way we can help protect our families, our environment, and our surrounding communities.
Having a safe venue to safely dispose of unused and expired medication using the LifeInCheck Consumer Drug Take-Back Program is an easy way to accomplish this goal.
Check out where you can find a LifeInCheck Consumer Drug Take-Back receptacle near you.
It's quick and easy to use. You might be surprised to find out how many convenient locations are near you.
Please let me know in the comments if you have any questions, and let me know have you and your community or environment been personally affected by the opioid crises?