If you have unwanted or expired prescription drugs, you may be wondering about the best way to dispose of them. Should you simply throw them out? Take them to a drug take-back program? Flush them down the toilet? If you do flush them, will they damage your sewer system or contaminate the water supply? Will you need to call a septic service in Bethel, OH?
The answer is that disposal all depends on the situation. Let’s go through each way to dispose of medicines and which is the best for each circumstance.
Flushing down the toilet
The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) keeps a list of medicines that should be flushed down the toilet. That’s because this is a fast way to dispose of particularly dangerous drugs, ensuring they won’t be ingested purposely or accidentally. Drugs from Methadone to Oxycontin are on this list.
The FDA says that although there is some environmental impact from flushing, they consider it less of a threat than keeping the medicine around. When you keep dangerous medicines from the FDA’s list, it’s possible a child could accidentally take them or someone searching through your trash could take them.
In all other instances, it isn’t recommended to flush medicines down the toilet. This is because water treatment facilities aren’t built to remove pharmaceutical ingredients from the water. The government spends tens of millions of dollars attempting to remove drugs from the water supply each year.
Drug take-back programs
If your medicine isn’t on the FDA’s flush list, then this is the best choice. These programs offer a safe way to dispose of some prescription and over-the-counter drugs. You can rest assured that disposal will have a minimum impact on the environment and that the medicine won’t end up in the wrong hands.
Throw it in the trash
If you don’t have a drug take-back program near you, sealing the medicine in a container and throwing it in the trash is the next best option. However, addicts may still search people’s trash looking for prescription drugs. There is also some risk that the medicine could still leak into the groundwater as well, so a drug take-back program that ensures safe disposal remains the best option when available.
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Gullett Sanitation Services Inc. is licensed in the counties of Brown, Hamilton and Clermont, the village of Indian Hill and the city of Cincinnati. We remove sludge from all types of waste lagoons and perform repairs on residential sewer systems. Call today to learn how the trained and certified professionals on our team can help you—we look forward to assisting you soon!