It's important to limit diversion of unusued opioids - a prominent cause of the current opioid epidemic.
Patients need to understand that opioid medications should be used only as directed and practice safe storage and disposal of unused medication.
Remind them that:
- Improper use of opioids can lead to misuse disorder, addiction, overdose, and accidental death.
- They should keep opioid medications in the original packaging and keep the directions for appropriate use.
- Opioids should be safely stored by hiding them or using locked cabinets to ensure they are not misused or diverted to individuals without a prescription.
- Unused opioids should be disposed of at an approved location