Having a well-stocked first aid kit can come in handy in many situations. Although kits of many different varieties can be purchased at a local drug store, it is often a good idea to make your own. By putting together your own first aid kit, you can include all of the most essential items needed in case of a medical emergency. Below are some important items you should include in your first aid kit in case you can’t get to an emergency center immediately.
Bandages, Dressings, and Ointments
Compression or elastic bandages, commonly known as ACE bandages, are useful for stabilizing muscle sprains and strains. Sterile gauze will help keep a wound clean in cases of bleeding, and adhesive bandages of various sizes and shapes are essential for minor to moderate scrapes and cuts. Before bandaging an injury, you may choose to apply antibiotic ointment, hydrocortisone, or another antiseptic, so keep these items in your kit as well.
Aspirin is good to have on hand for relieving minor pain caused by strains, muscle soreness, or headache. If you or your child is at risk of anaphylactic shock, having a professionally prescribed EpiPen on your person and in your first aid kit is a must. Allergy medicines and other prescription medications may also prove useful.
An instant cold compress will help with inflammation and swelling and is especially useful in instances when an ice pack is not available or practical. Nitrile (non-latex) gloves, scissors, tweezers, and an oral thermometer are also must-have items. Including a list of emergency phone numbers and a first aid instruction booklet will help you react calmly in an urgent situation.
After putting together your kit, it is important to check it regularly. Make sure that none of the bandages, antiseptics, or other medical supplies has passed their expiration dates and replace them when needed. You may choose to have first aid kits both in your home and car.
If you have a medical emergency that requires more than first aid, contact the experts at River Oaks Emergency Center. Our staff is available 24 hours a day, seven days a week to provide prompt emergency center medical care to the greater Houston area. Learn more about our comprehensive diagnostic and treatment options by visiting our website or contacting us at (713) 469-3223.