By Sophie Ryan, iSelect Spokesperson Most of us could do with some extra savings…
When you organise your medicine cupboard, it will ultimately save time, making finding the right medicines easy and most importantly improve the quality of your family’s home medical care. The medicine cupboard can be a chaotic territory, old scripts you never use, the old pill you used to take when you were a teenager and god knows what else. Of course when it’s the middle of the night, you have a sick child, and you’re trying to rummage through and find children’s Panadol, but its nowhere to be seen! The only things you can find are expired. It’s time to sort and organise this zone. Here is how to organise your medicine Cupboard!
Take everything out and check dates!
First things first I’m a realist (sorry I had to), time to pull everything out and throw anything away that you no longer use, or that has expired. You will be surprised how much medication you will have that expired back in 2001 along with butterfly hair clips.
To safely dispose of unwanted medicine; check out the Return Unwanted Medicines (or the RUM Project) website. RUM is one of the first initiatives that provides us a free and easy way to dispose of expired and unwanted medicines. “Anyone can return their medicines to any community pharmacy anytime, for safe collection and disposal”. They safely dispose these medicines by high temperature incineration. It is obviously important to regularly dispose of unwanted medications safely so it cant get into the hands of children, also a wise decision for careers of the elderly.
Sort into categories that work for you
Now this can vary from household to household, but below I have some categories that will help you sort out your own medicine cupboard. Below you can see my cupboard and I have organised my medications them into 5 large tubs and two small containers. These are;
Daily Tablets: These are tablets and medications such as; prescription meds, necessary daily tablets, multivitamin, fish oil etc
Cold + Flu: For items such as cold and flu tablets, decongestants, lozenges, asthma puffers (as I don’t use these daily), immune support tablets etc
Pain Relief: A small tub for any sort of pain relief in case of headaches or any pain relate issues; paracetamol, ibuprofen
Scripts: A small tub to keep any scripts we have, this was something I loved making a space for because we would always lose them!
Kids Wellness: Any vitamins, greens powders for the kids
Kids Medication: To store any children’s pain relief, thermometer cough medicine, Vicks, ointments, teething gel etc
This will depend on the size of your cupboard, if you have a larger area like I do you can utilise tubs, baskets and boxes. For smaller sizes think about using plastic drawers or smaller containers. Below are some perfect storage options:
Here are some different ideas for storage! Click on the image for the link
Create a functional space
Now with the space itself you want to make sure the items you use regularly are at a closer reach, you don’t want to be having to reach up high to grab your daily tablets when you can have them at eye-level. Obviously if you have small children it is important to always have all medications and dangerous substances out of reach. You can also store items such as suncream, first aid, bug spray and other ointments.
Label your heart out
Of course the last step is LABEL, LABEL , LABEL. This will ensure the whole family knows where to find things and where to put them back. Once you have a system in place there is absolutely no upkeep and you are less likely to purchase items that you already have.
Here is a handy list of labels you may use in your medicine cabinet:
- Kids Medication
- Daily Medications
- Cold + Flu
- First Aid
- Sore Throat
- Creams + Ointments
- Pain relief
- Bandages + Dressings
For a 10% discount on Little Label Co labels use the code “STEPH10”
Steph’s Medicine Cupboard:
For my medicine cupboard I decided to go with clear tubs so I could still see what is in them (and of course apparently husbands don’t read labels). Then I labelled them and used white contact paper on the inside of the tub to help the label stand out more. As for our first aid kit, I just bought one from Kmart. Click on the images below for links to the products I used.
Kmart Fridge Tub- click here
Kmart Small & Narrow Clear Drawer- click here
Kmart First Aid Kit- click here
I hope this guide has made this job a little easier for you! Please tag me in all of your medicine cupboard organisation + before and after photos! With an organised medical cupboard; finding your family’s medicines will be much easier, quicker and you’ll feel so much better knowing you have all up-to-date medicines.