How to Stock Your Medicine Cabinet for LessAnna Newell Jones
Nothing is worse then having a sick child in the middle of the night and not having the right medicine to treat their symptoms. Over the counter medications can really impact your wallet especially when you are desperate for help.
Here are 7 ways to ensure your medicine cabinet is fully stocked — for less!
1. Start with an Inventory
If you don’t know what’s in your medicine cabinet, take a few hours to find out. Doing a medicine cabinet inventory will be super helpful going forward. Grab some paper and a pen to write down what you have. Throw out all expired products and reorganize items by type and expiration date. The more organized your cabinet is, the less money you’ll waste on duplicate purchases.
I’ve got to admit, I’ve accidentally bought things I already owned simply because I was disorganized!
2. Use a Dry-Erase Board
If your closet or cabinet can accommodate one, place a dry-erase board on the inside of the door and re-write your inventory list so you know in a glance what you have. When you use the last of something, make a note on the board for quick reference later.
3. Stock the Basics
Have at least one item to treat the most common issues including pain medications, fever reducer, allergy treatments, cold care, cough relief, antibiotic cream, bandages, and gauze. Be cautious of keeping large amounts of the same item on hand because then you’ll likely end up with more expired products down the road.
4. Ask for Samples
When you visit your pediatrician, ask for any samples of medications they have to offer. Oftentimes doctors have an assortment of products on hand in sample sizes and that can save you a lot of money.
5. Get Generic
Don’t grab for the brand name medications first. Check out the store brand’s price and compare the ingredients in both before making a decision. More often than not, you’ll find the active ingredients in the generic brand are identical to the more expensive brand name.
6. Check Out the Dollar Stores
Dollar stores will stock many of the name brand medications that you need for $2-$3 less than other stores. You may be more limited in the choices, but you can get the basic medications for much cheaper if you keep tabs on what’s available.
7. Snag a Backup at Sales
Keep an eye on sales fliers in your neighborhood. When the local drugstore offers a great sale price on commonly used medicines, take advantage of the offers. You can buy one or two backups for the medications most often used like cough medicine or ibuprophen. Don’t waste money on the medicines you tend to throw out time after time by buying in bulk.
Image source: psyberartist