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Prescription Medication Safety in the Home

Prescription Medication Safety in the Home
Sam Sloan, MPH


The opioid epidemic has brought new and strange practices that many people may never have considered until it happens to them. The practice to which this post refers is that of stealing medications from homes. Aside from stealing from family and friends, people who choose to steal medications have found another easy way to accomplish their goal. Open houses, for viewing homes for sale, provide easy access to an unsuspecting homeowner’s medications.


Individuals will pretend to be interested in the home, roam about the house unattended and check all the places they expect medication to be kept. These individuals may be searching for drugs for their own habits, or to sell to acquaintances to make easy money. It’s not easy to spot this person. Though you may have an image in your head of who to suspect, this is not always the case. To combat this practice, it is recommended that prescription medications not be kept in the typical places, like bathrooms and kitchens cabinets. Lock boxes, cabinets that lock and unusual hiding places are all suggested as substitutes. This practice is fitting for daily life, and not just applicable to when strangers may enter the house. Children are known for putting things in their mouths out of curiosity, so proactive measures are always advised. It is also advisable to remove unused or unwanted medications from the home. To reduce the amount of medications available to be misused or stolen, return medication you have leftover to prescription medication drop box locations. Because of the cost of some prescription medications, it’s understandable to want to save them in case you need more one day, but this is a very inadvisable practice. Prescription medications that are kept past their expiration date do not work as well as they once did.


It’s also not a good idea to self-medicate and take medications that are not prescribed. Your previous medications may not treat the illness you’re experiencing. Do not share your medications with other people. Sharing medications is a felony offense, and very negative consequences, such as adverse reactions or overdose, may come from good intentions.



Please help us keep prescription medications from being misused. Use one of the drop boxes in Spartanburg County to reduce your risk of theft or accidental ingestion. Any and all prescription medications are welcome. There is no special procedure for depositing, and only one rule: no needles.

List of Dropbox Locations in Spartanburg

Contact the Prevention Office at The Forrester Center for questions.

Posted by Taylor Dockter | 0 Comment

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