The U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) is set to head up another nationwide coordinated effort to get unused prescription drugs off the street and out of medicine cabinets on April 26th. The upcoming event will be the 8th prescription drug take back day held.
To date, these nationwide efforts have been able to dispose of 1,700 tons of unused prescription drugs. Getting rid of these medications helps to reduce the potential of future misuse by someone else and helps to dispose of them properly.
The majority of young people who begin abusing prescription drugs get them from their homes or from their friends’ homes. Unused drugs pose a serious health threat if obtained by people they weren’t intended for, especially those with potential for abuse such as painkillers, sedatives, stimulants and tranquilizers.
Nearly 7 million Americans currently abuse prescription drugs, which is almost twice the number of those using cocaine, hallucinogens, heroin, and inhalants combined. Additionally, more Americans now die from overdoses of prescription medications than from motor vehicle accidents, according the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
If you would like to participate in the national prescription drug take back day and dispose of your unused medications, check out the DEA’s website here to find one of the 5,600 collection sites that is closest to you.