Well, I’m sick. Sniffling, sneezing, coughing, aching … you know the drill. Unfortunately, this isn’t the best time to figure out that I don’t have an organized medicine cabinet.
Apparently, it’s been a while since we have had a bad cold around here because my cough medicine is just a little bit expired. Actually, it expired in 2014. In my defense, it was tucked way back in the corner of the fridge.
That brings me to my challenge for you this week… Clean out your medicine cabinet. When I say medicine cabinet, I am talking about all of your medications and first aid supplies (no matter where they are).
Check Expiration Dates
The FDA’s article Don’t Be Tempted to Use Expired Medicines states the following about expired medications
Expired medical products can be less effective or risky due to a change in chemical composition or a decrease in strength. Certain expired medications are at risk of bacterial growth and sub-potent antibiotics can fail to treat infections, leading to more serious illnesses and antibiotic resistance.
Get rid of anything that you no longer use.
We’ve all done it at one time or another … tried a new brand or bought that new miracle cure. Sometimes new isn’t better. Unfortunately, when we go back to our tried and true products, the “new and improved” gets shoved to the back of the cabinet.
As you are going through your medications and first aid supplies, ask yourself if you will ever use this product again. If not, get rid of it. You want an organized medicine cabinet, so don’t clutter it up with useless junk.
Make a list of supplies that you need to replace.
If you’re like me, you now need to replace a few things. Before you run to the store to get replacements, ask yourself if you really need a particular product. Don’t forget to check for coupons! Health and beauty products often have coupons available.
Your First Aid Kit
This doesn’t have to be anything fancy, just a central location for things you might need quickly. Some of the items that I have in my kit are band aids, antibiotic ointment, cotton balls, and gauze pads.
I used to have mine in a plastic box with a hinged lid. Actually I bought it as a fully stocked first aid kit. It worked ok for a while, but it didn’t fit right and was a bit inconvenient. Because of the odd shape and size, it usually got pushed to the back of the closed or moved up to the top shelf.
Now I use a mini three drawer storage unit like the one shown above. I keep this front and center on the middle shelf of the closet so we always have easy access to it.