Don’t forget Drug Take Back Day

The Lake Region Substance Abuse Coalition (LRSAC) wants to remind everyone to bring their expired, unused, and unwanted prescription drugs to the Bridgton Community Center for safe disposal this Saturday, Oct. 28, between 10 a.m. and 2 p.m. This is a free, anonymous service open to the public — no questions asked.

Too often, unused prescription drugs find their way into the wrong hands with dangerous and often tragic results. That's why it was great to see so many folks clean out their medicine cabinets and turn in — safely and anonymously — over 300 pounds of prescription drugs to the Bridgton Police Department last April. Liquids, needles, or sharps cannot be accepted, only pills or patches.

The Bridgton Police Department, in partnership with the Federal Drug Enforcement Administration, aims to prevent pill abuse and theft, and semi-annual drug take back days are helping. Last April, Americans turned in 450 tons (900,000 pounds) of prescription drugs at almost 5,500 sites operated by the DEA and more than 4,200 of its state and local law enforcement partners. Overall, the DEA and its partners have taken in over 8.1 million pounds — more than 4,050 tons — of pills in its 13 previous Take Back events.

The Lakes Region Substance Abuse Coalition shares some reasons to support Drug Take Back Day:

• Unused or expired prescription medications are a public health and safety issue that can lead to accidental poisoning, overdose, and abuse.

• Pharmaceutical drugs can be just as dangerous as street drugs when taken without a prescription or a doctor’s supervision.

• The nonmedical use of prescription drugs ranks second only to marijuana as the most common form of drug abuse in America (excluding alcohol).

• The majority of teenagers abusing prescription drugs get them from family, friends, and the home medicine cabinet. You could be a drug dealer and not even know it!

• Unused prescription drugs thrown in the trash can be retrieved and abused or illegally sold. Unused drugs that are flushed or buried contaminate the water supply. Proper disposal of unused drugs saves lives and protects the environment.

For more information about the disposal of prescription drugs or about the 2017 Drug Take Back Day in other areas of the Lake Region go to www.dea.gov or https://www.facebook/LRSACMaine

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