In the United States, homeopathic products, including arnica, are exempt from printed expiration dates. Since the shelf-life depends greatly on the condition homeopathic products are kept, an exact best-if-used-by date is difficult to pin down. This means that when stored correctly, arnica products can remain in good working order for many years after they are purchased.
Arnica Storage Recommendations for Max Shelf Life
Your product packaging should provide dos and don’ts for storage. The arnica pharmacists we spoke to further stressed the importance of proper storage. They provided the following recommendations to help your homeopathic arnica last as long as possible:
- Always keep arnica out of extreme heat or cold: Do not leave in a car or out in the sun. Furthermore, do not put arnica in the freezer or store outdoors in freezing temperatures.
- Do not refrigerate or store in moist areas: This includes small bathrooms and showers where steam is present on a regular basis.
- Keep your arnica in a cool, dry place. Kitchen cabinets, wardrobe shelves, or dresser drawers are ideal locations.
Signs Your Arnica Product Has Expired
When not stored in ideal conditions, it is possible that your arnica product may no longer be fit to use. Here are a few ways you can tell if your arnica product has expired:
- Be aware of changes in smell and taste: If oral arnica tastes bad, it likely is bad. The same principle can be followed for strong or strange odors.
- Look for alterations in texture or color: This is the case for oral arnica and topical arnica. Expired or spoiled arnica tablets may change their color or show signs of melting and/or disintegration. Arnica gels, ointments, and creams may also change in appearance or develop an unusual texture.
Always Play it Safe
Avoid products that you know have been improperly stored and/or look, smell, or taste at all unusual. If you are in doubt, bring the product to your local pharmacist or apothecary prior to use.
For more answers to common arnica questions, review our FAQ section.