Whether you live with others, have a family or you’re on your own, it’s important to have a first aid kit on hand in your home. In the event of an emergency—ranging from a serious natural disaster to a common household accident—a basic first aid kid can be a tremendous boon. While camping supply stores and emergency preparedness companies offer pre-assembled first aid kits, you can also make your own.
According to the Red Cross, it’s a good idea to keep a first aid kit in both your home and your car. Also, while it isn’t inappropriate to keep some basic supplies in your desk at work, most workplaces have first aid kits stored away, so take some time to double check where your employer keeps them. When building your kit, it’s vital that you start off with any critical medicines that you take on a regular basis (such as asthma or heart medication). Double-check that everything you place in the kit, including batteries, is fresh and up-to-date. Anything that’s expired, like medicine, should be thrown away and replaced immediately—with that in mind, it’s always a good idea to restock your kits on a regular basis.
The Red Cross notes that, aside from flashlights, a radio and a first aid manual, it’s crucial to keep a collection of first aid supplies on hand. These supplies include compress dressings, adhesive cloth tape, antiseptic materials (like wipes), antibiotic ointments, aspirin, a space blanket (this is important if you’re preparing a kit for hiking or your car), cold compress, non-latex gloves, bandages, gauze pads, an oral thermometer, scissors, tweezers and hydrocortisone ointment. Furthermore, it’s advisable to keep some water and dehydrated food in your kit, as well. If you’re preparing a kit for camping, hiking or for your car, you can pack a portable amount of food and potable water. You can also store a portable filtration system in your kit too (a good idea for camping). If you’re preparing a kit for your home, you should make sure to store enough food and water to last you (and whomever else you live with) with enough food and water to last for three days. However, there’s nothing wrong with stockpiling enough supplies to last for longer—in that case, you may want to invest in long-term storage foods and water tanks.
Creating a first aid kit is an important part of emergency preparedness. When it comes to staying safe during an emergency situation, a first aid kit will increase your chances immensely. Start building your kit today!