Medication Disposal

London Drugs pharmacists have long recognized the importance of properly disposing of medications, needles and other medicine-related supplies. There are programs in place at London Drugs to cut down on environmental waste through the safe recycling of medication-related materials:

Disposing of expired medication should be treated with caution as expired medication is considered hazardous waste. The best way to dispose of expired medication is to bring it directly to a London Drugs pharmacist who will then put it into the disposal safety container.

Taking expired medication can be harmful to your health while throwing out expired medication can be harmful to the environment. Properly disposing expired prescription drugs is important for a number of reasons, including the safety of your loved ones and the well-being of the environment. Keeping medicines around the house is not safe, especially if you have children/teenagers who could take the medicine by accident. Expired medications can be ineffective or even toxic. Prescription drugs, including over-the-counter medicines, can also be subject to reuse, misuse, theft and abuse.  Flushing your medicines down the toilet or drain, or tossing them in the garbage, is not recommended. The rainwater that collects at the bottom of landfills has been shown to contain antidepressants, antibiotics, steroids, hormones, heart and asthma medications and painkillers.

It is important to dispose of any medication that is twelve months or older, remove any medication not in its original container, and remove duplicates of OTC medications where the older medication is rarely used. For more information about disposing of expired medications, please visit a pharmacist at your nearest London Drugs location or visit online at For specific provincial information on medication return programs please visit the Health Steward site for British Columbia, Alberta, Saskatchewan and Manitoba.