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What Should You Keep in a First Aid Kit?

on May 22, 2014

It’s a vital tool in the case of an emergency, but one that not everyone has stored in their house or vehicle – a first aid kit.

First Aid Kit
Simply put, if you run into an emergency on the road or if you or someone you love is suddenly injured at home, you’re going to need the bandages and medical equipment contained in a first aid kit, which is really a vital component that should never be too far away in a health emergency.

These kits are available to purchase at a variety of places, most regularly at your local pharmacy. However, there are a few things to keep in mind about first aid kits. First off, you should make sure your kit has the following important items inside it:

  • Vital medications needed on a regular basis (talk to your doctor if you’re not sure what you should be storing away in the kit) and emergency contact numbers
  • A flashlight with working batteries

It’s important to regularly check the kit to make sure flashlight batteries haven’t expired, and that medication and other components aren’t past their expiry date.

As far as medical supplies go, the Red Cross recommends that a first aid kit for a family of four have the following items:

Bandages and dressing

  • 2 absorbent compress dressings (5 x 9 inches)
  • 25 adhesive bandages (assorted sizes)
  • 1 adhesive cloth tape (10 yards x 1 inch)
  • 5 antibiotic ointment packets (approximately 1 gram)
  • 5 antiseptic wipe packets
  • 1 roller bandage (3 inches wide)
  • 1 roller bandage (4 inches wide)
  • 5 sterile gauze pads (3 x 3 inches)
  • 5 sterile gauze pads (4 x 4 inches)
  • 2 triangular bandages

General health items

  • 2 packets of aspirin (81 mg each)
  • 1 blanket (space blanket)
  • 1 breathing barrier (with one-way valve)
  • 1 instant cold compress
  • 2 hydrocortisone ointment packets (approximately 1 gram each)
  • Oral thermometer (non-mercury/nonglass)

Tools and equipment

  • Tweezers
  • Scissors
  • 2 pair of nonlatex gloves (large)
  • First aid instruction booklet

It’s a good idea to bring that list with you when shopping for a first aid kit to make sure you get one that has everything you need for you and your family.