Tips for Storing Medication at College
Let’s face it: one of the much-anticipated pleasures of going to college is to avoid parental supervision. College is a time for children to live independently and we want them to enjoy their new freedom. For some children, it will be a rocky transition – there is a lot to learn about taking care of yourself so as not to speak of college-level homework. And for children who take medication, part of being independent means they are responsible for managing their medications.
The first year of college is not a good time for children to get off medications that work – because they are careless or experimenting. Ensuring that your child has the knowledge and preparation to receive their own medication can mean the difference between a strong start and a hard landing.
Medication Storage at College…
- Ask the staff at the college Health Center for the medical information they need to connect with their teens and organize medication prescriptions.
- If your teenager is taking medication to treat a health or mental illness, make sure he or she knows the name of the medicine, how it’s taken, what its side effects are, and whether any foods or drinks should be restricted (eg, alcohol ).
- Make sure that your teens roommate, Resident Advisor (RA), and / or College Health Center staff know about emergency medications your teens may need and where they can keep them. If your teenager’s condition is particularly complex or challenging, consider talking to or meeting a health center representative before the academic year begins.
Where and how should the student store their medication?
- Dorms (and even apartments) are easily accessible. People often leave the door open “just for a minute” while talking to someone or walking down the hall. This leads to problems including theft of medicines. Roommates can go through the student’s stuff or invite other people into the room who can do the same.
- Medications like all valuables should be kept in a safe place. Dorms can provide a room or safe deposit, but students often need their own storage device that they can put discreetly in their room. Our 8 Bottle Locking Tote Bag allows you the convenience of storing eight bottles in one place and then a lock that you can use to keep your medications secure.
- Students should use discretion and not talk about it or tell people that they are taking medication.
- When medications are hidden and closed, it can also be a challenge for the student to remember to take their medication. Students need to keep their balance, to remember to take their medication. Some students may choose to use a weekly pill sorter, which will be placed somewhere where they are seen daily but keep the rest of the drug locked up. Some students who use this option also add a multivitamin with the drug, so if asked, they can honestly say they are taking a vitamin and not arouse suspicion. A pill sorter can also be easier remembered when traveling on weekend trips.
- If the college is close to home, only a small amount of medication (eg 1-2 weeks) may be another option.