Consumer Alert: Improper storage of medications can cause health - Cleveland 19 News Cleveland, OH

Consumer Alert: Improper storage of medications can cause health risks

Contrary to popular belief, a medicine cabinet in the bathroom is actually a bad place to store medications. (Source: WOIO) Contrary to popular belief, a medicine cabinet in the bathroom is actually a bad place to store medications. (Source: WOIO)
(WOIO) - The weather can have a huge impact on the effectiveness of our medications. That's why we need to be careful where we store them, to make sure we're not jeopardizing our health. 

When it comes to taking medications, many of us store them in the bathroom. There is a medicine cabinet in there for a reason, right? Well, maybe you want to think again. 

"The bathroom is really the worst place to store your medications because you take showers and baths. That puts a lot of humidity in the air and humidity is really bad for medications," says pharmacist Jeanie Jaramillo.

Over time, it can actually damage the medication, especially the kind that comes in plastic capsules. 

Anther no-zone to consider is the kitchen. Because like in the bathroom, the temperatures are always fluctuating with the heat and humidity.    

But the worst place to keep your medication is the car.

"It would really be a problem for someone to leave medication in the glove box of your car. It should never be done, not in the hot summer or the cold winter," says Robin Johnson, of King's Compounding Pharmacy.

Johnson says one of her major concerns are epi-pens and insulin, especially in the winter, because the liquid content can easily freeze. 

"I would never count on a medication that has been frozen to be at its full potency. It should just be thrown away," she says.

While it's hard to actually see if your medication has been compromised by extreme temperatures or humidity, Johnson and Jarmillo both agree the best way to avoid the issue is to play it safe. Store your medication out of reach of children in a controlled area, like a linen closet. 

If you think your medication has been compromised from improper storage, there are Rx dropoff locations across Ohio where you can properly dispose of any medicine. Find a list of locations here.

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