a woman takes her inhaler off of the shelf of her medicine cabinet

Storing Medications In The “Right” Spot (Where You’ll Take Them!)

My mom and I have long had a repeated conversation going back to university (maybe even high school). Chores I was being asked to do only got done if they were written down. I like to believe this is not just me being difficult, but realistically a strategy for dealing with my ADHD and probability of forgetting all variety of things. So, if said chore was not written down on a (usually bright) post-it note on the kitchen table, it usually got forgotten. She could send me a text, phone me, but if I didn’t have that brightly colored square on the kitchen table, to remind my wandering mind… it often didn’t get done.

Remembering medications: Placement is key

For me, placement is super-key in remembering to take my medications. Here’s the deal: I know, I know, I know, I should not store medicine in the bathroom due to the effects humidity may have on my medications, but I do.

I may be incorrect, but I figure my inhalers are pretty well sealed to not leak all over the place. Other than my seldom-used prednisone, my pills stored in there are in blister packs, and my ADHD medication lives in my bedroom. When it comes to my ADHD medication, I wake up, lean over to my bedside table to take a pill without water, and usually go back to sleep or listen to a podcast until they begin working. By that point, I am more ready to actually start my day without an ADHD wake-up haze (which yes, is a thing).

My asthma medicine living in the bathroom is mostly because that is where I see it at the right times. When I see it, I remember to take it, and I proved this last week. I need that visual reminder, even after 4,139 days of daily medication.

Under the bed: Not a good place for storing medication

Recently, we had the flooring replaced in the main bathroom. This meant, of course, we cleared most of the miscellany out of the bathroom and off of the countertop. I took my basket of medications (which, admittedly, is in need of a good organizing!), and popped it into a gap under the IKEA storage cube things underneath the foot of my bed. They stayed under there for at least a week. I know there was definitely one and possibly two or more occasions where I woke up the next morning realizing I hadn’t taken my medication the night before… because of where it was being stored. It was not being a good visual reminder for me!

Each night my medicine was not housed in the bathroom as normal, I thought of it before I brushed my hair, brushed my teeth, and intended to take everything when I got to my room. Most nights I took it. However, some nights I missed that key step, evident by some unusual morning coughing in at least one occasion where I made the connection!

Location is everything: At home and on the go

For me, I’ve found where I put my medication is half the battle (if not more!) to actually taking it. For instance, even when my ADHD medication dose was changed to be taken twice a day so it would last longer into the evening (which I attempted for several years before switching to a different one), I was most successful when I literally had the pill in my pocket to take around noon—despite having silent alarms on my fitbit to remind me, too.

If I could seamlessly slip the pill out of that tiny pocket in my jeans straight to my mouth, it greatly decreased my chance of getting distracted before taking it. Even just having to dig the pills out of my backpack wasn’t ideal because it added more steps!

So, until I have a house of my own with perhaps a spot elsewhere that is the “right” spot, I found that week storing my medications in a weird spot in my room clearly wasn’t the “right” place for me!

Where do you store your medications? Why does this place make sense for you? Share in the comments below.

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