Expired and in Search of a Final Destination

Expired Prescription Medication

 Expired Medication or Drugs

While everyone's home is different often the items inside are the same. In that regard one question that we get asked a lot is, what to do with expired medication? Medication that has expired or you are no longer taking should generally never be flushed down the sink or toilet. While this method was popular for years and the debate is still out, some feel that it hasn't been great for local sewage treatment systems or waterways. The FDA sill advises opioids to be flushed, but there are other options. The FDA recommends removing the medication from the container and mixing with food garage and sealing in Ziploc bag or similar sealing bag before tossing in the trash. You can rip or cross out your name on the label before recycling the plastic container.  The challenge for those who are trying not to add to landfills is to find a workable alternative. The DEA offers a annual drug take back program and many local police stations and health departments have safe medication disposal boxes.  We encourage people not to put up too many barriers to getting rid of unwanted items in their home. We tend to see collections of medication to be disposed of sit for years in the back of a closet. Focus on the action and move to the car or reward yourself with a treat for dropping of in a proper receptacle. One of the key motivating factors for properly disposing of medications is to keep it away from curious children and so removing it from the house in a timely manner should determine your preferred disposal method. Lastly, these same suggestions apply to pet medication. Anyone who has a dog at home that eats everything in site knows the dangers expired drugs can pose. 

Expired Vitamins and Supplements

 Expired Vitamins

For old vitamins the same rules as prescriptions medication apply and you can follow the disposal steps above. Additionally, some people feel that they don't really expire and if not that old may still have some potency left, but from an organizing point of view it is more about clutter removal, so ask yourself why you weren't able to take the vitamins before they expired. There is also a debate about whether you can compost vitamins and minerals or use them on in houseplant soil. Others make facial or bath scrubs out of them. Again, these options feel best explored for those with a schedule featuring a lot of free time.