What Really Happens When You Take Antibiotics Past Their Expiration Date

We all know that the expiration date on food is more of a guideline than a rule that has to be followed strictly – but what about antibiotics? Every medicine sold in the USA comes with an expiration date marked on the package, but a lot of us don’t take these too seriously. Medicines seem like they should last a lot better than food. Leave a Tylenol caplet and an apple on the counter and see which one rots first. No prizes for getting that one right.

Sadly it isn’t that simple, though. Medicines might not visibly spoil like food, but their active ingredients can break down over time. Sometimes that means they won’t work as well as they should. Sometimes they can become toxic. There are a lot of medicines you can safely use years after the date stamped on the box, but you need to know what ones they are – and what ones to avoid.

What Do The Expiration Dates Mean?

In 1979 the FDA passed a law requiring all drug manufacturers to put an expiration date on their products. Officially, that date tells you how long the drug can be relied on to have the desired effect


Originally posted on Ask A Prepper