How To Store Medicine Without A Medicine Cabinet

Stacy Randall
by Stacy Randall

Maintaining an organized home can be tricky when you don’t have a lot of storage solutions. But luckily, with a bit of creativity and helpful tips, you can keep your things neat and tidy. Storing medicine without a medicine cabinet is easy, but you need to do it properly.

Store medicine in a dry, cool place like a cabinet, drawer, or pantry. Keep the medication away from heat sources, so avoid storing it above the stove or near the shower. If you have kids in the home, a lockable medication storage box is worth considering. Lazy Susans, spice racks, and bins are other medication storage options.

How you store your medication depends on how much you have and how often you take it. You’ll likely store medicine you only need once in a while differently from daily medications.

Where Do You Keep Daily Medication?

If you take certain medications every day, you want to keep them easily accessible. A medicine cabinet is a popular place to keep medication out of reach of children yet quick to grab. But it’s not actually a great place to keep your medicine.

Medicine loses its potency when exposed to lots of moisture and heat. Additionally, too much heat and other negative factors can cause certain medications to act differently.

Medicine cabinets are typically located right above a bathroom sink and potentially close to a hot shower. These features make them less than ideal places to store medication. Plus, not everyone has a medicine cabinet.

What Can I Use Instead Of A Medicine Cabinet?

Instead of using a medicine cabinet, you can store your medication in several ways. For daily medications, keep them in stackable clear drawers in a closet or up on a shelf. Many people choose to simply leave their medicines on the counter.

How Do You Organize Medicine On The Counter?

Keeping daily medications on the counter undoubtedly makes it easy to remember to take them. But a bunch of bottles haphazardly strewn about the counter looks messy and disorganized.

If you need to keep your medication on the counter, you have a couple of options to do so neatly. You can use a pill sorter to prep your medicine for the week. Keep the bottles up in a cabinet, and you’ll only have your sorter on the counter.

Pill sorters come in different styles and sizes, so find one that will fit your medications. However, if you have young children in the home, you won’t want any medication easily accessible.

According to the United States Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC), roughly 9 out of 10 unintentional poisonings happen in the home. Therefore, if you have young children at home, a locked medication box is a good idea.

9 Home Medication Storage Ideas (That Aren’t A Medicine Cabinet)

Keeping safety and other practical considerations in mind, how should you store medicine without a medicine cabinet? Here are some different options, so you can decide which one makes the most sense for your particular situation.

1. A Kitchen Or Bathroom Cabinet

A cabinet is a popular place to keep medication when you don’t have a medicine cabinet. You can store bottles on tiered organizing shelves or inside stackable drawers. Choose an upper cabinet that is away from any immediate heat sources, like a toaster, stove, or steamy shower.

The advantage of a cabinet is it keeps medication out of sight, which can help things look tidier. Plus, kids who don’t see medication are less likely to be curious and accidentally ingest it.

A kitchen or bathroom cabinet is basically as close to a medicine cabinet as you can get. If choosing one over the other, the kitchen cabinet is often a better option. Your kitchen likely doesn’t get as steamy and humid as your bathroom.

2. Keep Medication On Floating Shelves

If you want to store medication in a specific area that doesn’t have any cabinetry, consider installing shelving. Floating shelves look clean and crisp and can hold several bottles. This look might work better in a bathroom if you don’t mind having your medication on display.

If you don’t have young kids in the home and are working with a small space, this could be an excellent option for you. It keeps your medications within easy reach without taking up valuable counter space.

3. Locking Medication Storage Box

As previously mentioned, a locked storage box is ideal for medication in households with children. It’s even more imperative to keep medicine locked up if you don’t have any upper cabinets or shelves to keep it.

Storage boxes come with combination locks or keys and come in a variety of colors and sizes. It’s a great way to bring medication with you when you travel, too. This way, you can ensure everything stays locked up safely in your hotel room.

4. Storage Drawers

You can also keep medication in a storage drawer or stacking drawers on your vanity or dresser. This setup keeps your medication close at hand but looks neater than leaving it loose on the counter.

You can find storage drawers in all sorts of styles and sizes. You can get clear ones, opaque ones, plastic, metal, different colors, and more. Select something that fits with your bathroom’s design, and it will blend in seamlessly.

5. Put Medication In A Nightstand Or Dresser Drawer

Another popular location for medication is inside a dresser or nightstand drawer. These spots are especially convenient places for medication you take before bed or first thing in the morning.

Your nightstand is also great for any medicine you end up needing to take in the middle of the night. (Like when you wake up at 2 am with a splitting headache or upset stomach.)

These types of drawers are also typically in a cool, dry place, which is ideal for medicine storage. If you keep your medication in a drawer, make sure to keep it in its original container with childproof caps.

6. Organize Medication Into Bins Or Baskets

You can separate and sort your medication into bins by type, frequency, urgency, etc. This can make it easier to get the medicine you need when you need it. Keep the containers on an upper closet shelf or inside of a cabinet.

You can grab the particular bin you need without having to sift through all of your medication. You can also organize by person if you have different medicines for different people in the home. Try out several organizing methods to see which way works best for you.

7. Use A Lazy Susan For Medications

A turntable or Lazy Susan is a great way to store medication on a deep shelf. You can place it in a cabinet or inside your pantry. Utilize different trays for various types of drugs.

For example, painkillers might be on one turntable, cold and flu medications on another, etc. You won’t have to move anything out of the way to access items further back on the shelf. All you need to do is give the tray a quick spin and you can get what you need.

8. Put Medication In A Safe

You could also use a safe if you have lots of medication in the house. You can keep medicine and other items in it to ensure they remain out of harm’s way. Plus, a safe provides a cool, dry place.

A safe is similar to a locking medication storage box, but many safes might be more permanent. So, if you want to take your medicine on the go, a lock box could work better.

But for medications that remain in the home, a safe works well. When traveling, you can always transfer the necessary dosages into a lock box or other travel medication storage option.

9. Store Medicine On A Spice Rack

When organizing, make sure to look at a variety of storage options, not just ones for medication. A spice rack for medicine bottles and containers is a great way to work with limited space.

You can mount a spice rack on the back of a cabinet door or use an over-the-door rack. Place medications on the shelves by type to make them easy to find.

How Do You Store Medicine Without A Medicine Cabinet?

You have alternatives if you don’t have a medicine cabinet or don’t want to keep your medication in such a steamy environment. You can utilize storage drawers or bins inside of a cabinet or up on a shelf.

Another possibility is to organize your medication into a locking storage box, which is ideal for households with children. If you like to keep medicine easily accessible on the counter, a pill sorter is an option. However, don’t use this method if young kids are around.

Whether you choose to keep medicine in a dresser or nightstand drawer, inside a cabinet, or on your counter, do so safely. Make sure kids can’t easily access the medication and keep it away from excessive heat and moisture. As long as it’s safe and works for you, then it’s an ideal way to store your medicine.

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Stacy Randall
Stacy Randall

Stacy Randall is a wife, mother, and freelance writer from NOLA that has always had a love for DIY projects, home organization, and making spaces beautiful. Together with her husband, she has been spending the last several years lovingly renovating her grandparent's former home, making it their own and learning a lot about life along the way.

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