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Medicine Cabinet Necessities

Medicine cabinets can seem fairly inconsequential...until you need them.

This is an area to really try and keep organized because when you cut your hand with a knife you don't want to be spending a whole lot of time looking for the band-aids.

I challenge you this month to tackle your medicine cabinet.

1. Declutter -- Always a must for any project.Get rid of expired medicine as well as combining near empty. Also now is a good time to get rid of any of the medicine you no longer use. Here are some tips for when to heed the expiration dates on drugs, and here is the FDA's guide to proper drug disposal.

2. Restock -- Make sure you have on hand the things you use when sick. Each person's go-to's are obviously different but Apartment Therapy made a great list as a jumping off point.

  • Medication for pain, headache and fever (acetaminophen, ibruprofen, or aspirin)

  • Antihistamine (like Benadryl)

  • Hydrocortisone cream

  • Bandages

  • Antiseptic for cleaning wounds (like hydrogen peroxide)

  • Ointment to prevent wound infections (like Neosporin)

  • Aloe vera gel

  • Medication for digestive problems: antacids, antidiarrheal medication, stool softener

  • Cough medicine (It may be good to keep both a.m. and p.m. formulas handy.)

  • Decongestant

  • Throat Lozenges

  • Thermometer

  • Nail Clippers

  • Cotton Swabs

  • Tweezers (for splinter removal)

3. Contain -- Deicide where you want to keep these items and how you want to separate them. Some people like to keep them all together, others separate adult medicine from children's medicine, or medicine from first aid supplies.

This doesn't have to be elaborate or complicated, in fact it's better if it isn't. I like boxes with lids so the items don't get dusty, but honestly go wild.

4. Store -- Where you decide to house these items will also inform what kind of containers to get. Most medicines suggest storing them in an area with low humidity and a steady temperature, so the bathroom may not be the ideal place for medicine storage, even though that's the place that immediately comes to mind for most of us. If you have the space, consider moving your medicine storage to the kitchen, pantry, or linen closet.

The most important thing is that they are all in the same place so when something happens you know right where to go.

Future you will be so glad you took the time to do this.

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