Kids have a way of getting into everything. But you might not always think about the things in your medicine cabinet that could cause them harm. That’s why it’s essential to purchase medicine with child-resistant packaging. And it’s not just the stuff you keep in your medicine cabinet—curious children will snoop around in purses, jacket pockets, handbags, wallets, glove compartments, and other places people typically keep their medicines.
You can’t just rely on child-resistant packaging, either. To help ensure you don’t wind up with an accidental overdose on your hands, keep your medicine out of reach of your little explorers. Here are some helpful tips:
Store medicine in a locked cabinet.
The safest place to store medicine is out of the sight and reach of children. This can be a high cabinet or closet, and it should be locked at all times.
Use child-resistant caps for added security.
Keep medicine in its original container.
Don't switch containers for pills or liquids, because they could be mistaken for something else. Also, never use a medicine if the container doesn't have a legible label.
Never leave medicine out.
If you get called to the phone or front door while you're taking or giving medicine, don't leave the container behind. Also, as tempting as it is when you’re going to take another dose soon, don’t leave medicine sitting out. Children act quickly, so medicine that’s forgotten about, even just for a moment, can be dangerous.
Discard medicine carefully.
Don’t throw medicine in the trash—your child could easily dig it out. Instead, ask your pharmacist for a local collection program. If you must throw out the medicine, keep it in its container and double-bag it.
Never refer to medicine as candy.
Help your child understand that medicine is medicine. Always call it by its proper name.
Unpack and store medicine first.
A bottle of coated pills looks a lot like candy to a young child. Remove medicine from grocery bags before your curious kids start investigating.