Although you can purchase complete first aid kits, your needs may vary depending on any special medical condition you have and the medical services you require in a medical emergency. It’s wise to create your own custom first aid kit that will provide all the basics you could need in an emergency.
You should keep a first aid kit in your car, at home, and at work, and each of these kits may have different supplies more applicable to each setting. When putting together your basic first aid kits, make sure you include these 11 must-have items.
1. Triangular Bandages
These bandages have a variety of uses, including the ability to stop bleeding, apply pressure, protect a wound, or act as a sling for an arm injury.
2. Adhesive Bandages
Widely known as Band-Aids, adhesive dressing strips can protect many types of minor wounds, giving you peace of mind that you won’t get an infection in a scratch, cut, or sting.
Antihistamines can treat allergies and come in handy if you experience symptoms associated with these conditions. Some symptoms can be severe, so include these medications in your first aid kits just in case.
It’s always wise to have painkillers such as ibuprofen or aspirin on hand. Include drugs safe for children as well, like infant paracetamol.
5. Alcohol Swabs
Alcohol swabs are must-haves in all of your first aid kits, as they sanitize wounds or areas of the skin prior to injections, keeping the process safe and hygienic.
6. Anti-itch Cream
Itchy, uncomfortable skin is common, especially when traveling or spending time outdoors. Make sure you have an anti-itch cream handy that can provide instant relief until you can get further treatment.
7. Eye Wash
Eye washes will instantly sooth and relieve eyes in the event of an emergency or if an irritant or foreign object enters the eye. Eye washes can also relieve itchy eyes caused by allergies.
Scissors are useful in a number of emergencies, including to cut bandages or to help remove dressings or clothing that surrounds a wound.
9. Sterile Eye Dressings
Eye injuries can be serious and are usually painful. Include sterile eye dressings in your first aid kit, which are hygienic and padded to help protect and treat eye wounds.
10. Safety Pins
Safety pins are included in most first aid kits, as they serve a variety of useful purposes for injuries and emergencies. Most importantly, safety pins are used to secure bandages or clothing so that proper pressure can be applied to wounds or injuries.
Tweezers are essential for traveling and being outdoors. For example, splinters or ticks can be removed safely with tweezers, but make sure they’re sterilized with alcohol first.
Other first aid kits could be for specific locations and activities such as camping, which should include items like cold packs, plastic bags, or a whistle. A first aid kit for children might include a thermometer. Further customize your first aid kits to include any other equipment you need to manage medical conditions you may have, such as an EpiPen.
While a well-stocked first aid kit can assist with a range of minor injuries and illnesses, you may need more serious medical care in the event of an emergency situation. When you find yourself in need of emergency treatment or EMS service, it’s crucial that you have ambulance cover as part of your health insurance plan.
Compare your medical coverage options with iSelect so you never have to worry about ambulance transport and treatment from paramedics, should you need it.