By STEVE JASIECKI

Many towns offer a safe and convenient way to dispose of outdated and obsolete medications that have been hanging around in medicine cabinets.

To make it easy to dispose of unused medications, Ventnor, Margate and Longport Police stations have drug disposal boxes located in the foyers of their police departments.  The unused pharmaceuticals can be placed in the well marked “Medicine Disposal Box” anonymously with no questions asked.

In the past, unused medications were thrown in the trash or flushed down the toilet. Safely disposing of pharmaceuticals keeps medications out of the waste stream which has harmful effects to the environment. Trace elements of antibiotics, mood stabilizers, hormones and other drugs have been found in streams, lakes and drinking water.

Over the years hundreds of pounds of unused medications have been collected by the police and disposed of properly.

Pharmaceutical abuse is on the rise. The US Drug Enforcement Administration reports that two out of five teenagers mistakenly believe that prescription drugs are much safer than illegal drugs.  Each year thousands of New Jerseyans enter addiction treatment programs due to prescription drug abuse. By eliminating no longer needed medications and keeping our medications away from children, we protect our families from potential abuse.

To properly dispose of your medicine, remove your information from the pill bottle and place the container in the box. No forms to fill out, no one to talk to. It’s as simple as placing a letter in a mailbox. Please do not put loose pills in the box. If you don’t have a container, place the pills in a small plastic sandwich bag to keep them contained.

The Medicine Disposal boxes only accept solid household medications, pills and capsules.  To safely dispose of liquid medicines, mix them with coffee grounds or kitty litter to absorb the liquid then place the mixture in a sealable container and dispose in the trash.

For more information, see https://www.njconsumeraffairs.gov/meddrop#

 

 

Categories: Downbeach

Nanette LoBiondo Galloway

Award winning journalist covering news, events and people of Atlantic County for more than 20 years.