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First Aid Kits

Essential First Aid Kit Supplies

In case of emergency, it is important to be prepared. This means having a well-stocked first aid kit in your home, in your car and with you when you go on trips, like camping. A travel first aid kit might be smaller than a home first aid kit, but it should still have the essentials.

The American Red Cross suggests that all first aid kits include certain items. For a family of four, a first aid kit should include:

  • 2 absorbent compress dressings (5 x 9 inches)
  • 25 adhesive bandages (assorted sizes)
  • 1 roll of adhesive cloth tape (10 yards x 1 inch)
  • 5 antibiotic ointment packets (approximately 1 gram)
  • 5 antiseptic wipes (individually wrapped)
  • 2 packets of aspirin (81 mg each)
  • 1 blanket (space blanket)
  • 1 breathing barrier (with one-way valve)
  • 1 instant cold compress
  • 2 pairs of non-latex gloves (size large)
  • 2 hydrocortisone ointment packets (approximately 1 gram each)
  • 1 3-inch-wide roller bandage
  • 1 4-inch-wide roller bandage
  • 5 sterile 3-by-3-inch gauze pads
  • 5 sterile 4-by-4-inch gauze pads
  • 2 triangular bandages
  • Scissors
  • Tweezers
  • An oral thermometer (non-mercury / non-glass)
  • A first aid instruction booklet
    • Most of these items can be purchased at department stores and pharmacies. Some may need to be replaced every so often to maintain freshness (for example, pain medications and ointments). Simply pull these out of the first aid kit before they have expired and work them into your regular medicine supply. Replace the items in the first aid kit with newer products and make a note to remind yourself when to check the stale dates again.

      Pack everything in a waterproof container so nothing can get damaged. Familiarize yourself with all of these items as you purchase them. This will ensure that you know their proper applications and are ready to use them if or when the time comes. Be sure to tell your family or anyone you are traveling with where the first aid kit is so they can access it easily in case of emergency or injury.

      It is also possible to purchase a pre-made, already-stocked emergency first aid kit. This may be more expensive, but it is convenient when you find yourself in need of a kit.

      If you choose your first aid kit supplies carefully based on what you anticipate needing, you can pack the perfect kit and be prepared for anything!

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