In this article, we’ll go over must haves for your first aid kit list, and at the end of the article, we will provide a printable first aid kit shopping list to get you started, so keep reading!
Food is essential for when SHTF, but medicine is just as important.
We all know it’s important to be prepared for an emergency – but just how much should we prepare for, and what are the most critical supplies you need in your emergency kit?
A well put together emergency kit can help you respond to minor injuries, also protect wounds as they heal, and even prevent serious harm in an emergency. First aid kits are essential to keep in your home, automobile, and workplace.
- 1 What is a First Aid Kit?
- 2 Maintaining Your First Aid Kit
- 3 First Aid Kit List Must Haves
- 3.1 Basic Items
- 3.2 Injury and Wound Care
- 3.3 Medicine
- 3.4 Contact Numbers and Information
- 3.5 Comprehensive First Aid and CPR Training
- 4 First Aid Kit List – Final Thoughts
- 5 First Aid Kit List – Printable Shopping List
What is a First Aid Kit?
These home first aid kit can provide everything you need to respond to minor emergencies like cuts, burns, stings, splinters, sprains, as well as digestive or respiratory problems. You can also use your home first aid kit as the first line of defense in a more serious injury while you wait for emergency services.
First aid kits are essential to have on hand at home, in your car, and your workplace. It should be well stocked with everything you might need in case of medical emergency. Store them in dry and waterproof container.
In fact, by law, most workplaces must have an appropriate first aid kit on site, so be sure to follow these guidelines. We recommend bringing your own first aid kit to work as well, because you never know what you may need.
One can also add customized supplies to your first aid kid, depending on where you’ll be taking it. If you’re traveling internationally, you may want to add medications for digestive issues.
Additionally, if you’re going camping, you can include outdoor essentials like waterproof matches or insect repellants to prepare for emergencies.
Maintaining Your First Aid Kit
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You can purchase well stocked first aid kits, or make your own. Most local pharmacies provide first aid kits for sale, and you can find them online at places like Amazon. We recommend always customizing your kit based on your family’s specific needs, medications, or health histories, because each individual is different.
You should also regularly check your kit for missing, expired, or broken items. Count your supplies and make sure you have a backup supply for each item. Check expiration dates and throw out anything expired, as a result you won’t get stuck without vital supplies.
Also, be sure to test your batteries regularly to make sure they’re working. You don’t want to realize you’re out of bandages or missing batteries when you’re in the middle of an emergency!
First Aid Kit List Must Haves
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So, you’re ready to stock your first aid kit, but what should you include in it?
We will go over the supplies you’ll need in a small first aid kit for a family size of about four people. Also, remember that you can also modify your equipment for specific needs or activities like camping or boating.
Our first aid kit list fits into four separate categories: basic supplies, injury and wound care, medications, and emergency supplies. You can check out the American Red Cross online store for supplies.
For each of these categories, we’ll explain which items are essential and which items are subject to personal preference or setting. For example, you don’t need insect repellent in your indoor kit at home. But, you might want it in your car or a kit you take camping.
- DK (Author)
- English (Publication Language)
- 288 Pages - 09/01/2014 (Publication Date) - DK (Publisher)
Every first aid kit should have some basic supplies for responding to an emergency or injury. Some of the items on this list are only necessary for certain situations, but they are essential for most activities.
You would need a waterproof container to hold supplies and medications. It must be something light enough to carry with you. Here are the following items that you need to store in your kit:
- Duct tape or other adhesive tapes
- Petroleum jelly or other lubricants
- Plastic bags
- Safety pins, ideally in assorted sizes
- Hand sanitizer
- Eye solution
- First-aid manual
- Instant heat and ice packs
- Ace wrap
For a kit serving outdoor activities, you should also include These Other Items:
- Insect Repellant
- Waterproof battery-powered flashlight and extra batteries
- Waterproof matches
Injury and Wound Care
The most common use for first aid kits is to respond to minor cuts, scrapes, burns, stings, and also other minor injuries. Even for injuries that require a professional medical response, the first aid kit can be a life-saving intermediate measure for any person.
Every first aid kit should include the following regardless of its purpose.
- Five packets or one tube of antibiotic ointment
- Two packets or one tube of hydrocortisone ointment
- Five antiseptic wipes
- Two compress dressings or trauma pads (absorbent)
- 25 Band-Aids or other adhesive bandages in various sizes
- One roll of adhesive cloth tape
- Emergency blanket or “space blanket”
- Surgical masks or face mask
- One instant cold compress
- 1 non stick sterile gauze bandages
- 5 gauze pads (sterile) in assorted sizes
- Two triangular bandages
- Two pairs of latex-free disposable gloves
- One oral thermometer
Other essentials can include:
- Eye shield, patch, or pad
- Rubber tourniquet
- Aluminum finger splint
- Cotton balls and swabs
- Sterile saline for flushing wounds
- Syringe or medicine spoon
- Hydrogen peroxide
- Calamine lotion
- Aloe Vera gel
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It’s also a good idea to have medicine on hand in your first aid kit. You can include backups of any particular medication you or your family use regularly, and also prescription medications that don’t need refrigeration.
Make sure to store them items away from children, and have items stored in a grab-and-go container.
Here are a few common medications you may want to include.
- Anti-diarrhea medication
- Antihistamine for allergic reactions
- Cough and cold medications
- Pain relievers like acetaminophen or ibuprofen
Aspirin is an absolute must-have in a first aid kit, because it can save someone’s life if they have a heart attack. You can treat various illnesses with this medication.
If an adult is having unexplained chest pains, call emergency services immediately and have them take one regular-strength aspirin. But, don’t give aspirin to children.
Depending on your family’s needs, you may also want to include:
- Autoinjector of prescribed epinephrine
- Personal medications that don’t need refrigeration
Be sure to replace expired items immediately.
Contact Numbers and Information
Medical contact numbers and medical history can add the final touches to your kit, so consider including the following:
- Phone numbers: your family doctor and pediatrician’s number, a number for the local emergency room, emergency roadside service, and poison helpline
- Medical consent, as well as medical history forms for each member of your household
Comprehensive First Aid and CPR Training
Perhaps, you should consider taking a first aid course or training. This way, you’d know the basics of giving initial aid to a family member or yourself. In fact, adult members of your family should get a training on how to do CPR.
Knowing how to do CPR might just save a life. Learning how to provide emergency treatment can also mean the difference between death and survival. Familiar yourself with the right medication for various ailments.
Here’s a step-by-step guide on how to perform CPR:
1. Check the scene for safety.
If the person is in a danger zone, such as near electrical wires or in a burning building, do not enter the area. Call 911 and wait for medical professionals to arrive.
2. If the person is not in a danger zone, check for signs of life.
If they are not breathing and have no pulse, then it’s time to start CPR.
3. Begin chest compressions
Place your hands in the center of the person’s chest. Use your body weight to push down hard and fast, at a rate of about 100 compressions per minute.
4. Open the Airways
After 30 chest compressions, open the person’s airway by tilting their head back and lifting their chin up. Then, pinch their nose shut and place your mouth over theirs. Give two rescue breaths, making sure that their chest rises with each breath.
5. Continue with More Compressions
Give 30 more chest compressions and then two more rescue breaths until help arrives or the person begins to breathe on their own.
It’s important to keep up a steady rhythm and not to stop until help arrives or the person begins to breathe on their own. With a little practice, anyone can learn CPR and be prepared in the event of an emergency.
First Aid Kit List – Final Thoughts
The first aid kit lists above are a great starting point for your first aid kit must haves. In addition to preparing a few first aid kits for your home and vehicle, also make sure you’ve discussed emergency plans with family members.
Talk through things like meeting points, emergency contacts, and medication preferences, so that everyone knows what to do. Make sure to save emergency phone numbers on your phones. You might want need the number of the disease control and poison control agencies.
With good preparation and communication, as a result you can rest easy knowing that you and your family can handle whatever comes your way.
First Aid Kit List – Printable Shopping List
Use this printable first aid kit shopping list to assemble your first aid kit, as a result you will always be prepared. Remember to do a regular check to ensure you have enough of each item and that things like batteries are still working.
This list will get you started with the basics for a first aid kit that fits any situation, therefore you should include these for your at-home kit, a travel kit, and at work. Be sure to also bring these items on any trips, including camping, boating, or hiking trips.
You can continue to add more supplies or essentials based on your family’s needs or health concerns, but be certain to have these basics on hand.