Skip to content

    Buying Online Drugs Safely

    Font Size
    A
    A
    A

    Topic Overview

    Buying medicine over the Internet can make life a lot easier. Medicines on the Internet are sometimes cheaper. Your pills are delivered to your door.

    Unfortunately, there are many dishonest online drugstores-and it can be hard to tell the honest ones from the dishonest ones. So you need to be very careful when you're buying medicines online.

    Recommended Related to Drugs and Herbs

    New Prescriptions

    Q: What should I expect to be told about any newly prescribed medication? A: When it comes to medication, what you don’t know can definitely hurt you. Almost half of all Americans regularly take at least one prescription drug, and half of older patients take three or more, according to a report released in by the National Center on Health Statistics. But doctors don’t always communicate critical information about the drugs they prescribe. And prescription drug misuse is a growing problem,...

    Read the New Prescriptions article > >

    How can you safely buy drugs online?

    You can safely buy medicine online if you use online pharmacies recommended by the National Association of Boards of Pharmacy. This organization verifies Internet drugstores throughout the United States and most Canadian provinces.

    The National Association of Boards of Pharmacy has created a website at www.awarerx.org. You can visit this site to find out which online drugstores are recommended and which aren't.

    It's also safe to buy medicine through your health insurance company's website.

    Don't trust an online drugstore if:

    • The website doesn't ask you for a prescription.
    • The drugstore isn't a licensed pharmacy. In the U.S. and Canada, pharmacies are licensed by individual state or provincial governments.
    • The online drugstore doesn't have a licensed pharmacist available to answer your questions.
    • The website isn't "secure." This means that any information you type in-your address, your credit card number-could be read and used by anyone who comes across it. Secure websites use special tools to "encrypt" your information. They turn it into a code that other people can't read. You can tell that a website is secure if the URL (the Web address) begins with "https" rather than just "http."

    Why should you worry about online drugs?

    You could end up buying pills that hurt rather than help.

    The World Health Organization found that more than half of the drugs sold online and by places that do not show a physical address were fake. Medicines that you buy online from sources that are not regulated can be either too strong or too weak.

    Criminals who sell drugs online have one goal: to make money. So they often focus on medicines that are in demand and not available in a lower-cost generic form.

    Many fake drugs are expertly packaged. They look like the real thing, but they may have been made under very dirty conditions. And they may contain ingredients like chalk, sugar, and flour instead of the medicine you need. In the worst cases, a fake pill will contain drugs or chemicals that could harm you.

    1

    WebMD Medical Reference from Healthwise

    Last Updated: September 09, 2014
    This information is not intended to replace the advice of a doctor. Healthwise disclaims any liability for the decisions you make based on this information.
    Next Article:

    Buying Online Drugs Safely Topics

    Hot Topics

    WebMD Video: Now Playing

    Click here to wach video: Dirty Truth About Hand Washing

    Which sex is the worst about washing up? Why is it so important? We’ve got the dirty truth on how and when to wash your hands.

    Click here to watch video: Dirty Truth About Hand Washing

    Popular Slideshows & Tools on WebMD

    disciplining a boy
    Types, symptoms, causes.
    fruit drinks
    Eat these to think better.
    Balding man in mirror
    Treatments & solutions.
    No gym workout
    Moves to help control blood sugar.
    Remember your finger
    Are you getting more forgetful?
    acupuncture needle on shoulder
    10 tips to look and feel good.
    Close up of eye
    12 reasons you're distracted.
    birth control pills
    Which kind is right for you?
    embarrassed woman
    Do you feel guilty after eating?
    woman biting a big ice cube
    Habits that wreck your teeth.
    pacemaker next to xray
    Treatment options.
    Pink badge on woman chest to support breat cancer
    Myths and facts.

    Women's Health Newsletter

    Find out what women really need.