Safe Disposal & Storage
Securely storing medications in your house, as well as regularly disposing of all unused and expired medications helps reduce the risk of accidental ingestion or misuse. By following proper storage and disposal practices, you can help protect yourself, as well as your loved ones.
There are several safe options that can be used at your home or business to throw away unneeded, expired, and dangerous medications. The best option is to find a medication take-back event or a Dropbox location nearby.
If those options are not available, follow the proper alternative disposal method for that specific medicine. Options include throwing them in the trash or flushing medicines down the sink or toilet. Learn more on how to properly dispose of your medication by visiting the Food and Drug Administration's Disposal page.
The U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) holds a National Prescription Drug Take Back Day each year in communities across the country to allow individuals to safely dispose of any unneeded medications. Learn about the next Drug Take Back Day near you.
Ensuring the safe storage of medication, particularly opioids, is critical:
- Keep opioids inaccessible to pets, infants, children, and teenagers by securely storing them.
- Consider using a lockbox to store your medication.
- Maintain a record of your opioid medication and monitor the quantity to detect any missing pills.
- Avoid keeping opioids in easily accessible areas such as kitchens and bathrooms, where they could be unintentionally accessed.