How To Stock A First Aid Kit From The Scratch
Remember those things you were taught in school about first aid kits as kids? How they come in very handy in emergency health situations and better yet, how they could help you save a life! Ten-year-old me paid keen attention to these things and learned them with wide eyes. However, as I grew into adulthood, it is profoundly ironic how this “wonder” somehow managed to dissipate. This, as I have found is quite common with many other adults.
If you’re like many people, you pretty much never think about first aid supplies much more considered acquiring a first aid kit until the blood starts gushing out. And then, more often than not, it can be a bit of a panic. Pawing through the medicine cabinet, wondering where the heck those Band-Aids or antiseptics are. If you’ve caught yourself in this panic mess many times, then it’s about time you learn how to stock a first aid kit or maybe two first aid kits (one for the car). It helps to always be prepared for those health emergencies!
Why You Need A First Aid Kit
First aid kits are built to be compact! You can have all of your first aid supplies in one bag. This allows you easily move them around and get them to the spot you want swiftly, especially in emergencies.
While you can always purchase a first aid kit from your pharmacy or health care providers, personally stocking up yours gives room for even more flexibility. What’s more, first aid kits are customizable to suit your need – whether you’re home, traveling, for the car, babies, known medical conditions, and even for institution or commercial needs.
PS: You will need a checklist in order to learn how to stock a first aid kit
A First Aid Kit Checklist
Get a bag
This is the absolute first thing you need when stocking up a first aid kit. Without the bag, the compact all-in-one vision of a first-aid kit might as well be non-existent. Get a bag big enough to stash in all of your first aid supplies but not so large that it takes up too much space. With all those cunning compartments travel bags for toiletries (outbound link here) seem to have, these could be a perfect choice.
These are essential for covering up a small scrape, hiding a nasty cut, or protecting a slight bruise. The padded covering on the back absorbs blood and fluids and prevents bacteria from entering the wound. About 25-30 adhesive bandages in assorted sizes should be present in your first aid kit.
When stacking up your first aid kit with band-aids, it helps to keep special bandages for fingertips and knuckles and larger bandages for scraped knees or elbows. Feel free to ramp up more fun for everyone by adding some Dora and SpongeBob Band-Aids at your local drug store for the kids (or even yourself).
Wipes or sprays saturated with alcohol or hydrogen peroxide are perfect for cleaning minor cuts and scrapes. About five packets of antiseptic should be present in your first aid kit. If you’re scared of the sting or have kids that are, consider stacking up antiseptic sprays, like Bactine.
Tweezers are small tools used for picking up objects too small to be easily handled with human fingers. Want to get rid of splinters stuck in your arm (or any other body part)? Get a pair of first-aid tweezers. Buy a few so you can keep one in your bathroom and one in each of your first aid kits.
Antibiotic ointments are suitable for use only on the skin. They are essential for treating minor skin infections caused by small cuts, scrapes, or burns. With antibiotic ointments in your first aid kit, you’ve got ammunition against these minor wounds and infections.
Whether you’re using a plastic bag filled with ice or a fancy Boo Boo Buddy Instant Cold Packs, cold packs Ice can decrease swelling and inflammation and help stop bleeding. The cold restricts blood circulation, which in turn can numb the pain. It can also help limit any bruising. You can keep instant cold packs in your home first-aid kit or in your car in case of emergencies.
Alcohol-based hand sanitizer
These come in very handy in situations where you have no quick access to soap and water with which you can wash your hands before treating someone else’s injury or your own. Hand sanitizers are one of the best ways to kill germs.
Insect bites, rashes, bug bites, poison oak/ivy, eczema, dermatitis, allergies, itching of the outer female genitals, anal itching are certain conditions that thaw on our optimal health status. Possessing hydrocortisone ointment in your first aid kit can facilitate your prompt response to situations like this as hydrocortisone is known to reduce the swelling, itching, and redness that can occur in these types of conditions. Two to three tubes would suffice.
A sterile dressing is usually required for injuries that a Band-Aid can’t cover. As injuries like this would most likely be encountered in emergency situations, it helps to stash sterile dressings of different sizes in your first aid kit. It should contain at least eight pieces of four-by-four inch and two-by-two inch sizes. You could also add two roller bandages (one three-inch wide and one four-inch wide) and a couple of absorbent compress dressings (5×9 inches) in your first aid kit.
Adhesive cloth tape
Adhesive tape is used to hold bandages in place, whether small or large. They can also help create pressure over a wound to free hands for other first aid. Your first aid kit should contain a 10-yard roll of one-inch wide adhesive cloth tape.
With all the band-aids and sterile dressings in your first aid kit, a pair of scissors would definitely be needed. A special pair of scissors known as bandage scissors or trauma shears are required. These have an angled blade that allows you to neatly cut a strip of the adhesive tape to size without cutting your patient at the same time.
Aspirin is an everyday pain killer. They help in reducing pain and aches from headache, toothache, mensuration. They can also be used to treat colds and to bring down a high temperature. Your first-aid kit should contain at least two packets of 81-milligram aspirin tablets.
Aspirins should however not be ingested by children.
Thermometers come in different forms. The common type used to stock up a first aid kit is the reusable thermometer. These are however tough to keep clean, and if left lying around, tend to disappear when you need them most. It, therefore, helps to ensure you keep your thermometer sterilized and stashed up in your first aid kit.
Gloves are an important addition to any first aid kit. What’s more, they are very inexpensive. Stock up your first aid kit with universal-sized gloves so that anyone in your family can use them. Always keep two pairs in your first aid kit.
Triangular bandages perform multiple functions. They can be used as an arm sling to support or immobilize an injury to a bone. A triangular bandage is can be used as an improvised pad to control bleeding as well.
Stash your first aid kit with these essential first aid supplies and you’ve successfully been able to arm yourself to respond effectively in emergency health situations.
Thanks for reading!