As the sun is finally making a return, everyone is excited about the prospect of getting out in the great outdoors with the family to take walks and bike rides, and maybe even camp under the stars.
If you’re getting ready to take a trip, it’s vital that you throw in a first-aid or minor trauma kit into your gear. Whilst everyone hopes they will never need it, having a trauma kit to hand can and will save lives when it’s used effectively if the time calls for it.
What to Include
What you include in your personal first-aid kit is entirely up to you and your family, and everyone’s needs must be taken into account when putting a kit together. You can get ready-made kits from the internet for various prices, but it’s always worth personalising your kit, as well as remembering to update it should you use a piece of equipment form it.
Here’s a basic list of requirements for a first-aid kit:
Medical PPE (Personal Protective Equipment)
This covers gloves, masks and eye protection. Whilst masks and eye protection may not be needed in a simple kit, having a few pairs of non-latex gloves on hand and a CPR mask should be counted as basic and essential.
Dressings, Gauze, and Band-Aids of various sizes
It’s important to keep various sized pieces of wound care equipment in your kit for all sorts of emergencies. Modern wound care equipment is specially designed to be used in a hurry by just about everyone. Pack some in your kit and be ready should you ever need it.
Bleeding Control Equipment
There are many pieces of equipment you may wish to carry to control bleeding. Simple things like QuikClot can help stop small bleeds, but if you want to be well prepared, consider adding a tourniquet to your kit. These are small and lightweight but may just save a life.
OTC (Over The Counter) Medicines
The medicines you decide to add to your kit will be highly personalised to you. It’s important to label medicines very clearly, especially if you have a family member or friend you travel with who is allergic to some medicines.
You may wish to consider adding an anti-inflammatory medication, a paracetamol based medication and an aspirin based medicine to your kit, along with an antihistamine.
If you, a family member, or a friend you travel with is on regular medication, it might be worth adding an extra well-labelled stash to your kit for emergencies.
Personal Care Items
Personal care items can range from anything like personal prescribed medications to things like bite cream, insect repellent, sunscreen, and even feminine hygiene products.
When building your personal first aid kit, it’s important to take the climate and duration of your trip into consideration. For instance, The Highlands of Scotland are famous for their evil midges, which means you will need a good deterrent. Similarly, large areas of South Asia are famous for malaria-carrying mosquitoes so it’s best to be prepared in advance.