How to Properly Dispose of Needles
Always use an FDA-cleared sharps container when available. Free sharps containers may be available from your doctor, health insurance provider, or medication supplier.
Dispose of Sharps Containers
If you cannot get an FDA-cleared sharps container, follow these guidelines:
- Use an empty household container with these features:
- Tight-fitting lid that cannot be punctured
- Stays upright
- Made of heavy-duty plastic that will not puncture easily
- Does not leak
- Dispose of household sharps container when it is 2/3 full:
- Close lid, tape shut, and label “sharps biohazard”
- Take sharps container to sharps disposal program
- If you cannot find a sharps disposal program, put the container in the center of a full trash bag and discard in regular trash. Do not put sharps containers in recycling.
- How To Safely Dispose Of Needles (PDF)