National Poison Prevention Week is March 20-26, which is a good reminder to go through your prescription and OTC medications to clear out the ones that are expired or that you no longer use. Rather than throw them in the garbage or flush them in the toilet, the American Association of Poison Control Centers recommends you dispose of them in medicine disposal drop boxes. There are several drop boxes throughout NC and a map of them can be found here: NC Medicine Disposal Drop Boxes.
Should there be accidental ingestion or misuse of medications, call the Poison Help
number at 1-800-222-1222. It’s a good idea to save this number in your phone
so you have it when you need it. The experts answering the line are skilled at handling emergencies, are knowledgeable about how to take or give medicine, and can address your concerns about plants, chemicals, carbon monoxide, bites, stings, and more.
The American Association of Poison Control Centers recommends the following medication safety tips:
Practice Safe Storage Habits
The following items should be stored up, away, and out of sight of children, and in their original containers. Alternatively, keep these substances in cabinets secured with child-resistant locks. Keep in mind that there is no such thing as a 100-percent child-proof lock or container.
· All medicines and pharmaceuticals, including over-the-counter medicines, prescription medicines, vitamins, and supplements
· Tobacco and e-cigarette products, especially liquid nicotine
· Laundry and cleaning supplies
· Pesticides and insect repellents
· Button batteries, such as those found in musical greeting cards, key fobs, etc.
· Any type of oil or lubricant, including fragrance oils, tiki torch oils, engine oil, etc.
· Personal care products, especially contact lens disinfectants and hand sanitizers
· Other chemicals
It’s your health. Make a point of discussing ALL your medicines with your doctors and anyone who helps you with your medical care. If you have questions about your medicines, like how much to take or why you’re taking it, do not guess!
Read and Follow the Entire Label
Always read and follow the entire medicine label, including on over-the-counter medicines. Make sure you know how much medicine to take, how often to take it, and whether there are certain foods, beverages, or other medicines you should avoid while taking your medicine.