Storing medications in high temperatures can decrease effectiveness and some medications can cause increased sensitivity to the sun. Some prescriptions, over-the-counter medications and supplements can be less effective and lose potency if they are exposed to higher temperatures if left out in the sun or in a hot place for too long. Take time to look over your medications and talk to your doctor about any concerns or questions you have. Your medications help keep you healthy; keeping them out of the heat is a smart way to stay safe all summer.
- Do not put medications in an area of direct sunlight (avoid storing medications on windowsills or taking with you for a day at the pool or beach).
- Do not store medications in areas of high humidity (avoid storing medications in a bathroom which has a shower or bathtub or in the kitchen near the dishwasher or oven)
- Look at your medications before you take them. If they are stuck together in the bottle, if they have any changes in the shape or to the coating of pills — the integrity of the medication may have been compromised. (Important: you cannot always tell there is a problem just by looking. If you can visually see a change, the integrity is likely to be compromised, but the opposite isn’t true. There can still be a decrease in potency/effectiveness even if you can’t see any difference to the medication).
- And remember: never store medications in your car. Car interiors can rise to over 160°, which can be especially harmful to your medications.