Sunday, June 22, 2008

How to dispose of expired medications

I have never known the proper way to dispose of medications, though I did know that putting them down the drain or toilet was not good. They end up in the sewer system, make their way into the waters of the world and are starting to mutate fish and sea animals; seriously, they are showing up with some estrogen! Fish with two heads, etc., ala "The Simpsons".
One tip I found was to take it to your pharmacy to dispose of it. I took a big bag to our regular pharmacy; they were puzzled, said they had no ability to dispose of it (what do they do with their trash???) and that one of the pharmacists has a second job in a hospital so he would take it there....way too complicated.
The City of Scottsdale has just provided my answer in their monthly newletter included in my utility bill. I always find something interesting -- this time I see that I can now recycle pizza boxes! But, the big news is --- "add a bit of warm water to the bottle to help dissolve the pills, remove the label, then place it in your regular household garbage." That is brilliant and so easy!
As a side note, I recently read that those little scrubbing bubbles in facial cleaners are plastic, so they settle at the bottom of the ocean as they do not ever disintegrate. There, they "scrub" the sealife and are causing lots of problems in their underwater environment.