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Health Tip: Safely Dispose of Medications

Last Updated: January 24, 2013.

(HealthDay News) -- If you need to dispose of unused or expired medications, doing so incorrectly could cause more harm than good.

The American Academy of Pediatrics offers these suggestions:

  • Never flush any medication down the toilet, unless package instructions specifically say to do so. Trace amounts of birth control and painkillers have been found flushed into rivers from sewage treatment plants.
  • Ask your local police department if it offers a drug collection program.
  • Find out if your community has a household hazardous waste collection program.
  • If you must dispose of a medication yourself, dispose of it in a sealed container with coffee grounds, kitty litter or something else that will discourage people from digging through the mixture.

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