Don't Be Left Unprepared: How To Stock Your Emergency First Aid Kit

When it comes to first aid kits, you're going to need more than one. Having one at home is a great start, but you're not always going to be at home when an emergency occurs. To make sure that you're prepared for an emergency wherever you happen to be, you should also have an emergency first aid kit in your car and at your place of employment. Whether you buy a pre-made first aid kit, or you put one together for yourself, it's important that it be stocked with the right items. Here are four items you'll need to stock in your first aid kit.

Supplies to Clean and Disinfect Wounds

When you're putting your first aid kit together, you'll need to remember to include items that can be used to clean and disinfect wounds. Individual antiseptic wipes are great for small cuts and abrasions, but they won't do much for larger wounds. That's why you need to carry a small supply of peroxide, rubbing alcohol, or iodine. You can buy a larger bottle of each and then transfer a small amount to travel size containers. It's also a good idea to include a tube of antibiotic ointment.

Materials to Close Wounds

If you have bandages and medical gauze, you're prepared for those minor emergencies. However, not all emergencies or injuries are going to be minor. If you, or someone in your group, has sustained an open wound, you'll need to have a way to close it up. Open wounds can become infected quite quickly, especially if they're exposed to the elements.

Make sure that your first aid kit contains a generous supply of butterfly bandages. They can be used to pull the open edges of wounds together and close them up. It's also a good idea to carry a small supply of duct tape with you. In the event of a more serious emergency, or when you run out of butterfly bandages, you can tear the duct tape into strips and use the strips as makeshift wound closures.

Supplies to Provide Pain Relief

When it comes to restocking a first aid kit, many people often forget pain relief items. To make sure you're prepared when an emergency happens, you should always have pain relief items in your first aid kit. This should include a supply of over-the-counter pain medication, chemical ice packs, and lidocaine gel. The lidocaine gel will come in handy as a topical anesthetic for wounds, or even toothaches.

Medications and Ointments for Allergies

Allergies are another emergency issue that are often overlooked when it comes to first aid kits. However, keeping your first aid kit stocked with allergy supplies can be a lifesaver. Make sure your kit contains an oral antihistamine and a topical antihistamine. If you, or someone in your family, suffer from severe allergies, you should also keep a spare epi pen in your first aid kit.