Is it ok to take over the counter medicine that expired a month ago?

I have a cold and the over the counter liquid medicine is expired but it still looks fine. And it expired last month. i took a dose because its all I have. so is that ok? It was put in a medicine cabinet and no it wasn't kept in a warm place. it expired only last month.


Those dates are there by law and help them make more money. It is a win / win for them. Certain ones loose potency after a while and some go completely dead after a while. I have never heard of anyone getting sick off slightly out of date stuff. The more organic something is, the easier for it to lose potency.


FDA did a study on medication for the military a while back and concluded that most all medications do NOT expire for years and years. Read about it here.


The expiry date is just a "best before" date. The medicine is still good but it may not be as strong as it was before.


I have drunk medicine a year ago, but I did not have anything.


People who work in pharmacies have told me that most are effective for at least one year beyond the printed date.


Just a random guess based on other answers here.. it sounds like all that occurs is a chemical breakdown and the expiry is just a predicted date of when that might happen... BUT. Be very careful if it's something like amoxicillin or any other anti infection/ antibiotic medications. They are natural organic based medications (I think) unlike a chemical compound type so I'm unsure wether the expiration date on those mean that the stuff might be passed it's prime... just check online tho

Carolynn M

I'm sure it's ok.


probably. One month "over" is a short time range.


it is until you can buy a new one


OTC meds have expiration dates based on effectiveness. It's not like food, which could make you sick from bacteria. It just means the medicine gets less effective as it ages past that date. You're totally fine.


About the worse thing that can happen is the medicine is not as strong as it was at one time and not work very good if at all. Chances are its still good and will work just fine.

Jimmy C

Yes. Nothing wrong with it.


Sure. It can't HURT you, but it might not be effective any more, ESPECIALLY if you kept it in a warmish place. (Medicines often last longer if they are stroed in a cool place.)


I think there is no reason to take expired medicine, even if the expired medicine will not cause any major problems to the body.

Soul Doctor

No its not OK, its plain stupid why did you do it