Warm weather is right around the corner and that means it’s time to Spring clean closets, cars, and garages. Don’t forget to also sweep the medicine cabinet for prescriptions that are unused, expired, or unwanted. The Oakland County Sheriff’s Office provides residents with a venue to properly dispose of those prescriptions, with no questions asked, through Operation Medicine Cabinet program. Use one of the 36 drop-off locations around the county to dispose of medication in your home this spring, and year round, with some locations open 24/7.
Disposing of unused or expired prescriptions isn’t only good for keeping the medicine cabinet clear, but it also keeps loved ones safe. According to the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), more than 60,000 young children are taken to the emergency room every year due to medicine accidentally being ingested, and more than 700,000 cases are reported of adverse drug events from prescription abuse. Use these tips from the CDC to keep medicine out of the wrong hands and prevent prescription drug abuse:
- Pick a place your children cannot reach. Put medicines up and away after each use, do not leave them on tables or counters.
- Make sure the cap is on securely, and teach children about medication safety to prevent abuse.
- Always remind visiting guests to keep medicines out of reach, especially if they are kept in bags, purses or coats.
- Prevent prescription drug abuse by monitoring prescribed medications for children and teenagers, and keeping accurate counts of medication.
- Do not take more than the prescribed amount, or larger and more frequent doses, to try and achieve faster results.
- Do not sell or share prescription drugs. Keep all prescription drugs and dispose of them appropriately if they are no longer needed at one of the 34 drop-off locations in Oakland County.
- Be prepared in case of an emergency. Program the Poison Help number into a cell phone, or keep it close at home, (800) 222-1222.
If you think that a loved one may be abusing prescription drugs, visit the Oakland County Substance Abuse page for more information on ways to get help. To download a prescription drug abuse prevention toolkit, please click here.