First Aid Checklist
There are a great number of things that need to be added to an emergency first-aid kit for it to be complete. Some of the items may come as a surprise, but then again, so do most of the injuries, so an extensive kit may not only save a lot of time, but it may also save a life that you never thought would be in danger.
First Aid Kit
The first thing that you should put in a first-aid kit is a checklist. This will ensure that there will always be a list of what is required for the kit.
There are a few basics that will help you with basic cuts and scrapes. Preventing bleeding is absolutely essential to stopping many unnecessary hospitalizations. Be sure to have bandages, scissors, gauze, antibiotic ointment like Polysporin, as well as first-aid tape. This will keep cuts free from harm and allow for quicker healing.
Next, you should have items in case of an allergic reaction. Children’s antihistamine or melt-away tablets for adults can help with non-life-threatening reactions, while an Epipen, if not in the hands of someone with a life-threatening allergy, should be there as well.
Next, we turn to items that handle and prevent illnesses. Digital ear thermometers like the ones sold by GF Health Products are essential for checking for fevers, while ibuprofen, aspirin or acetaminophen should be provided, though be sure that they are age appropriate for the location. Do not worry about buying the generic brands for such drugs as they will have little to no difference.
Next, you should make sure there are items to deal with swelling and bumps. Instant-cold ice packs, like the ones sold by Roshgo, are essential if there is no nearby refrigeration. If there are splinters or other pieces of debris possibly lodged in cuts, tweezers should be available, and if the injuries are aggravating muscles or joints, a compression wrap (one for children and one for adults) should be available.
Sometimes the most obvious parts of the first-aid kit are the most overlooked. A list of emergency contact numbers relevant to the particular location and municipality are essential. If you are located in a rural location that does not provide 911 service, for example, you should have the local number, as well as the contact information of the local doctor or clinician. Keep a reminder that 911, if available, can provide ambulance, fire and police services to communities.
Also put down the emergency contact numbers of those either living or working in that particular establishment. Neighbors nearby may also be able to assist you given the situation, so also put down their information. Finally, important reminders about the medical conditions of those in the vicinity of a kit are also important.
Bring Your Cell Phone
A more recent addition to the “must-have” list of things for first-aid kits is in fact not required in the kit itself but can be vital in the application of items or diagnosis of certain illnesses and injuries. Cell phones have empowered us significantly, as they can provide more information via web databases such as Wikipedia or WebMD. Cell phones can also be used for calling emergency services and for providing precise and up-to-date global positioning information. In more practical ways, it can help provide lighting in dark areas when the application of bandages is required. It may not have revolutionized the first-aid kit but it has made its use much more accessible to the average person.