Proper Storage of Medications

There are a number of convenience containers that aid in taking medications - daily and weekly organizers, containers that beep when it's time for a dose, caps that count the times a vial has been opened. However, there are advantages in storing medicine in the original container, where the label identifies it and gives directions. If you're planning to use other containers, ask your pharmacist if its use will affect the stability of your medicines.

Never store medicine in the bathroom. Unless instructed otherwise, keep it away from heat, light and moisture. Never store medicine near a dangerous substance, which could be taken by mistake.

Even with one day's poor storage, tablets containing certain medicines could break down. It depends on where the medicine is stored and how sensitive it is to moisture, light or oxygen.

Carrying medicine in a pocket next to the body can raise the temperature. As some medicines break down they may no longer dissolve properly, and the body therefore can't use them.

Never take medicine that is discolored, has an unusual odor, or seems suspicious in some other way.

Discard outdated medicines.

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