Give your medicine cabinet a makeover
(NC) -- Have you checked your medicine cabinet lately? If you find expired products, it's time for a medicine cabinet makeover. Shoppers Drug Mart pharmacist Victor Wong has a few tips.
Check expiry dates
At least once a year, check for expired medications and vitamins. Dispose of any expired products (including over-the-counter medications) and prescription medication that is 12 months old or older. Medicine should not be thrown in the garbage or flushed down toilets and drains because it ends up in the environment, untreated and potentially unstable. You can take expired medications to your local Shoppers Drug Mart pharmacist who will dispose of them safely.
Any medicine not in its original container should also be properly disposed of. The misuse of medications leads to unnecessary hospital visits and avoidable risks. Removing unknown medication eliminates the possibility that it can be taken in error or get into the hands of a child.
Check labels and ingredients
Do you have any products you no longer need? Or ingredients to which you may be allergic? If so, pass them on to someone who can use them and make room for the things you do need. This is also a great time to clear out duplicates and assess whether you truly need both items.
People often store medications in the bathroom, but did you know that the moisture, heat and humidity levels may degrade the quality of a prepared medication? It's best to store medications in dry area such as a hallway closet, away from direct sources of light and safely out of the reach of young children.
Stock up on the basics
Make sure to stock up on basic first aid supplies like bandages, antiseptics and pain relief, along with products to treat cold and flu symptoms such as nasal sprays, vaporizers, hot lemon drinks and lozenges. A thermometer is a must—the latest digital thermometers feature a built-in fever indicator.
The next time you reach into the medicine cabinet, you'll feel confident knowing that your source of remedies is up-to-date, safe and ready to use.