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Medications and Personal Care Products

Our Community » Content » Medications and Personal Care Products

Properly disposing of these materials

What is the problem?
Currently, wastewater treatment plants and septic tank systems are not designed to completely eliminate some man-made products. This has led to unwanted pharmaceuticals and personal care products showing up in some cities’ drinking water.

What products are we talking about?

  • Prescription and non-prescription medications
  • Nutritional supplements
  • Cosmetics
  • Skin care products
  • Cleansing products

What about GRU’s water supply?
These products primarily show up in water supplies drawn from surface waters: streams, rivers, lakes and reservoirs. GRU’s gets its water supply from groundwater – the Floridian Aquifer – which is a protected underground source naturally filtered from contaminants.

What are the risks?
These products have not been shown to cause health problems for humans. But even in small quantities, the products are harmful to ecosystems. They can disrupt the developmental and reproductive systems of some aquatic organisms and wildlife.

How should I properly dispose of these products?
Do not flush your unwanted medications and personal care products down the toilet or the drain.

Recommended disposal methods include:

  • Mix unwanted medications with used coffee grounds or kitty litter and place in the garbage
  • Remove your prescription label, pour water in the bottle to dissolve the medication and throw it in the garbage
  • Take unwanted medications to your local hazardous waste collection facility or another location that properly disposes of unwanted medications. Approved Pharmaceutical Disposal Sites in Alachua County