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What do you do with empty inhalers?

What do y'all do with your empty inhalers? Can you just throw them in the trash? I tried searching around but like.... I don't know what to do with my empty inhaler.


  1. Hi Wild Tech, and thanks for this insightful question. How are you presently disposing of your metered dose inhalers (MDI's)? I had thought you mentioned (I could be wrong - my memory isn't what it used to be!), that you were a pharmacist. Is my memory correct?
    Anyhow, I did a cursory check on the internet and found a wealth of material on proper disposal of medications, including MDI's. Some of the material gets pretty specific based on the state one finds themselves in. As an additional resource, you may want to direct this question to your dispensing pharmacist.
    What do you think?
    Leon (site moderator asthma.net)

    1. I agree with you, Wild Tech! There are guidelines for disposal of MDI's that caution against just 'throwing them out'. If you do that search, you will see for yourself! Thanks, too, for letting me know about your schooling status as a pharmacy tech!
      All the best,
      Leon (site moderator asthma.net)

    2. Welp, today I learned that you shouldn't just throw them out -- which I've been doing forever. Oops! To the pharmacy from now on. You always teach me new things, Leon! -Melissa, asthma.net team

  2. I think one of the options might actually be bringing them to the pharmacy and having them dispose of it themselves. I remember searching a bit a while ago; it seems they consider inhalers to be hazardous waste so they say it's best to just let the pharmacy dispose of it. I just place mine in a small bin to separate them from my current inhalers and should ask the pharmacy what to do with them.

    1. I get that! also hi!!! haha

    2. Nothing like a summer break during college! Hope you get lots of sleep and relax time in between studying. -Melissa, asthma.net team

  3. Another great question, I have used inhalers for over 40 years, and every time I have tossed one in the garbage have felt a sense of guilty about it. So years ago I started collecting them. On one shelf in my home I have a collection of over 200 empty inhalers of various types and styles and colors. Although, I would imagine most people aren't "nerdy" as myself and would rather dispose of them in some proper and safe fashion. One of my fellow contributors has written an article on this very topic. I will post a link to it here (https://asthma.net/living/disposing-old-medications-properly) if you want to check it out. I hope this helps. John. asthma.net community moderator.

    1. He's got tons of memorabilia -- model trucks and cars, posters, metal signs, an old retro clock ... we even have a few cardboard cutouts that were used for display in the grocery stores at different points. Michael Jackson, Britney Spears, and of course Jeff Gordon (remember the Pepsi car and uniform??). It's all pretty neat. -Melissa, asthma.net team

    2. WOW! I love cars and trucks and trains and such. I have a lot of NASCAR collectibles, some are autographed

  4. You can recycle ♻️ your inhalers cause they are plastic & metal also if you bring them in some places might even pay you

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