At least 70 percent of people in the U.S. take at least one prescription drug, while the average senior uses as many as five medications each day. Anyone who regularly sees a doctor knows drug prescriptions and dosages change regularly. This is why most Americans have a bathroom cabinet that contains at least a few bottles of unused or expired pills.
Do you need a little more room for your toothpaste and hairspray? You're in luck because Saturday is National Prescription Drug Take-Back Day.
Over the past four years, the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration has spearheaded this initiative and has held seven previous Take-Back Days, which are authorized by the Secure and Responsible Drug Disposal Act of 2010. As a result, the federal agency has collected more than 780,000 pounds of old, unwanted or unused pills.
But why not toss those beta-blockers and antidepressants in the trash? For a number of reasons.
Unused and expired prescription drugs sitting in medicine cabinets and kitchen drawers everywhere adds to the growing problems of accidental poisoning in children, drug addiction and overdose, as well as illegal possession and sales of controlled substances. Additionally, chucking that old bottle of pills in your garbage can is unsafe for the environment. The chemicals -- both active and non-active -- end up in the country's landfills and water supply.
The DEA has set up Take-Back sites nationwide from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. on Saturday.
Visit the agency's website to find a Take-Back location near you. Smooth 8 supports these efforts and encourages everyone to be smart about your medications and actively dispose of old or unused perscription drugs.
Photo courtesy of iStock and this CBS News article.
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