How to dump prescription drugs safely

CHARLESTON, SC (WCSC) - Saturday is National Prescription Drug Take Back Day. Law enforcement agencies across the Tri-County area are taking part in the effort in hopes of fighting a growing trend.

Every day 2,500 teens illegally try a prescription drug for the first time, that's according to the Charleston Police.

Authorities want to cut that number down by encouraging parents to be more aware of what they're doing with their medications.

According to the Department of Health and Environmental Control, prescription drug abuse is a big problem in South Carolina.

Mary Wise, pharmacist at Herold's, says she's encountering customers abusing pain killers more and more, and it's not just with her adult patients.

"The problem is seeming to get worse and it seems like they're getting younger and younger - the ones that are abusing the medications," said Wise.

Authorities say it's important that the community is educated on why it's vital to dump pills the smart way, to keep them out of the wrong hands.

"Don't flush your medications," said Wise. "Don't put them down the sink because, ultimately, it is circling back around and getting in the water supply."

Wise says throwing unwanted pills in the trash isn't good either because anyone could go through it.

And last - but most importantly, don't leave old medication sitting around in the house.

There's an easy way to dispose of medications. Agencies will be accepting your old or unused pills. Anyone can drop them all off with no questions asked. No needles or liquid medications are allowed.

The free event is happening across the Low Country Saturday from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.

Here's some of the drop-off locations:

Charleston Police Department Lobby (501 Virginia Ave., Charleston)

Parking lot of Citadel Mall (Orleans Rd. side)

Outside CVS Pharmacy (65 Sycamore Ave., Charleston)

Summerville Police Department (300 W. 2nd N. St., Summerville)

Dorchester County Sheriff's Office (212 Deming Wy., Summerville)

St. George Court House

Ashley River Fire Department

Georgetown County Sheriff's Office (430 N. Fraser St., Georgetown)

Midway Fire and Rescue

Pawleys Island Community of Georgetown County

Berkeley County Sheriff's Office (223 N. Live Oak Dr., Moncks Corner)

Berkeley County Summary Court (303B North Goose Creek Blvd., Goose Creek)

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