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South Orange News

Created: September 9, 2010
Updated: September 15, 2010

Guidelines for Proper Disposal of Household Medication

Over the counter and prescription medications should not be disposed down the drain. Properly disposing of unwanted and expired prescriptions and over-the-counter medications in the trash promotes a healthy aquatic environment and prevents accidental poisoning and intentional abuse.

To decrease the amount of pharmaceuticals entering the aquatic environment, all residents should dispose of excess, expired, or unwanted prescription and over-the-counter medication by following these four simple steps:

(1) Keep medicine in its original container. Mark out personal information on prescription bottles.
(2) Mix with water and coffee grinds, cat litter, or dirt.
(3) Place bottles in an opaque container, like a yogurt container and secure lid; or wrap in a dark colored plastic bag.
(4) Hide the container in the trash. Do NOT recycle.

Following these four simple steps promotes a healthy aquatic environment and prevents accidental poisoning and intentional abuse.

Attached is a PDF flyer illustrating the four simple steps to follow to properly dispose of household medication; to view the guidelines on the DEP website visit http://www.nj.gov/dep/docs/Prescription_Med_Disposal.pdf.