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Whether you have a big camping trip coming up soon, or just want to be extra prepared at home with your family, you might want to know what goes into making a good first aid kit.
Yes, there are first aid kits that you can buy all setup and ready to go, but by making your own first aid kit you are able to customize it to your family’s needs and make sure that nothing is left out.
When making a first aid kit, there are some essential items that need to be included, but there are also some other clever extras to add in that many store-bought first aid kits are missing.
Here is an essential guide on what to include in your personal first aid kit, so that you are always prepared for any situation!
The Basic Essentials
Basic essentials are items that need to be in every first aid kit. They help in almost any situation, and a first aid kit will not be complete without them! Be sure to stock up on these items, and even keep a few spare in a separate bag to top up your first aid kit when the items run low.
First Aid Bag
You can’t build your own first aid kit without a reliable first aid bag. The bag should have enough space and many different compartments to hold all of the different essential items that you will be adding in, and be able to be stored away in the car, cupboard or carried around comfortably.
On their own, safety pins are such useful little tools to keep around the house. In a first aid kit, they are a definite must-have. Safety pins are used to hold bandages together. Purchase different size safety pins to cater for different sized bandages.
This multi-pack of varying sized safety pins come in a clear plastic container, which can be easily stored away in your first aid kit.
Although Vaseline has many different uses, in a first aid kit is primarily used to cover a small scratch or cut, to stop the wound from drying out and scabbing. Vaseline is also great at hydrating dry, cracked skin and preventing chafe.
Gloves are a real necessity in any first aid kit. Not only will you be protecting yourself from contact with blood and other tissues, but the gloves will prevent your bare hands from infecting a wound with any dirt or germs.
If any of your family members have personal medication that might be needed on a trip, such as an asthma pump, it is always a good idea to keep some spare in the first aid kit. You never know when you might be stuck in a situation needing it, so rather be safe.
Emergency Phone Numbers
If something had to happen to you, would your family know who to call? Place an emergency phone number list in the first aid kit, and make sure to tell the family where to find it. Include police, hospitals, ambulances, family doctors, poison control, a relative and the fire department.
To Treat Cuts
Cuts, scrapes, and scratches happen often, and with kids being little adventurers, they will often come crying to you with a small scrape that needs some attention. Having the proper items ready and waiting in your first aid kit will help you deal with these accidents easily, and help calm your little one down while you mend to their cuts!
Gauze pads are always really useful for treating wounds and scrapes, and for wiping away any mess if needed. A pack of gauze pads will easily fit into your first aid kit, and should always be topped up when running out.
Antiseptic wipes will help to clean any wounds or cuts that have the chance of becoming infected. They are also used to clean hands before helping a family member with their injury. Keep a couple of packs tucked away in your first aid kit, you will be thankful when the time comes.
Antibiotic ointment is used to treat open wounds, killing off any harmful germs and bacteria that might cause an infection. The antibiotic ointment should be applied after the wound has been cleaned, and before it is bandaged.
To Treat Sprains and Pulls
Adults aren’t the only ones prone to sprains and muscle pulls, your kids might find themselves in pain from jumping too far or kicking a soccer ball wrong. Bandage wraps and other items will help compress and care for these injuries, helping to stop the injury from becoming worse.
These elastic bandage wraps help keep sprains and pulls under compression and in place. This helps to stop swelling and reduce pain in the area before medical attention can be sought out.
Broken fingers and finger sprains are fairly common, so make sure you have a finger splint ready and waiting in your first aid kit. It will help keep the finger in place until it can be checked over by a doctor.
Muscles sprains and pulls can be really painful, so it is a good idea to keep some pain relievers and anti-inflammatory pills in the first aid kit. They will assist by relieving pain and inflammation in the affected areas.
To Treat Rashes and Stings
Rashes can appear in an instant, either from an allergic reaction, environmental factors or illness. Treating these right away helps to reduce irritation and pain, so having the creams and lotions close by is important. Bug bites and stings are also fairly common, and often need to be treated immediately to stop the pain and risk of infection.
Hydrocortisone cream is really useful for rashes, stings and bug bites. It helps to relieve itching, swelling and irritation, as well as relieve an allergic reaction to surface wounds.
Calamine lotion has been trusted for years to treat rashes, spots, and itchiness. It is a soothing way to calm irritation, so be sure to keep some in your first aid kit.
To Treat Allergies
You might have someone in your family that is prone to allergies, either from food or the environment. Treating allergies quickly is often the best way to stop them or reduce their effects, so make sure to keep your first aid kit stocked with allergy treating items.
If you are out camping or away, you or your family’s allergies might start playing up, from dust, pollen or any other environmental factor. Antihistamines will help to relieve these allergies. Antihistamines are also helpful to reduce the effects of bug bites and bee stings.
You never know what situation you might find yourself in next, so just take extra caution and always keep some handy extra tools and items in your first aid kit to make sure you are prepared for almost anything!
Splinters happen, and there is nothing worse than being stuck with a splinter and no tweezers to help. A small set of tweezer is all you will need and are small enough to keep in any first aid bag. Be sure to choose stainless steel tweezers to help with hygiene.
Eyes are vulnerable to dust, chemicals and anything else that might cause irritation. Sterile eyedrops will help flush out any foreign items and soothe the pain and irritation of the eyes.
There is no argument that the sun can really damage skin and cause severe sunburn. Keep an extra bottle of high factor sunscreen in your first aid kit in case you are stuck without it in the sun. Use a sunscreen that is suited for the whole family, and which is waterproof as well.
Insect repellent is an absolute necessity when out camping or hiking. There really is nothing more irritating than bugs buzzing around and itchy bites from mosquitoes. Insect repellent will keep them away and hopefully give you some peace.
Burns can happen in an instant and can be quite scary to deal with. Burn gel will help soothe, relieve and treat any burns that may happen. The burn gel or patch can be applied directly to the burn until medical attention can be received.
Keeping some medication in your first aid kit is always a good idea. Keep medication that helps with common ailments, such as heartburn and digestive problems. This is particularly helpful when you are away on holiday and can’t pop out to the clinic quickly.
For chronic heartburn suffers and those who overindulged at dinner time, antacids can be a lifesaver. Effective and easy to take, they are one of those items you wish you hadn’t forgotten to pack!
Going on holiday puts you and your family in unfamiliar environments, and new food, water, and bugs can lead to an upset stomach. Don’t let this put a damper on your holiday, or let the condition get out of hand leading to dehydration or other conditions.
A Step Further
If you are serious about always being prepared, it might be a good idea to take a basic first aid course to help give yourself the confidence and skills to tackle basic medical situations. Many different organizations, such as the Red Cross, offer training courses in fields such as CPR, First Aid, and AED. These courses range from providing training for those with no experience to those who are experienced in first aid.
You should also familiarize yourself with the items in your first aid kit, and know how to use these items. Use video tutorials, online resources and read instructions on different items. You don’t want to be left clueless and reading long labels in a situation that requires immediate attention.
Being prepared is your best chance of successfully using your first aid kit when it is needed!
There is no better comfort you can give yourself when traveling with your family to know that you are prepared with your first aid kit, ready to tackle any situation. Keep all the essentials, and then some, safely packed away in a first aid bag that can be taken with the family on every adventure, or simply kept at home for emergencies.
Personalize your first aid bag to suit your family, and remember to check it each month to make sure everything is stocked up and ready to be used.
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