First Aid Kit Essentials

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Being caught off guard in any emergency situation is one of the worst-case scenarios. Everything comes down to how well you are prepared to handle the unexpected, before it becomes an emergency. First aid kits are the first line of defense from bruises and cuts, to burns and inflammation. And spring is a great time to restock or even create your family’s first aid kit.

A basic first aid kit should contain many necessary items, including:

Bandages
Bandages are required to stop or control bleeding and cover up the wound to protect it from infection. Keep a handful of bandages of every size to take care of any size wound. In addition to bandages, keep gauze, as well as tape and scissors to seal the gauze for larger wounds.
Antibiotic Ointment
Whether a wound is old or new, antibiotic ointment is necessary in protecting the body. Sometimes, an old wound could open up again. It’s important to have antibiotic ointment on hand, even if it stings, to keep all wounds clean.
Thermometer
Thermometers are helpful in monitoring a person’s status. If you are waiting on emergency help, keeping an eye on the patient’s temperature is great information for the professionals. If the patient’s temperature is rising rapidly, it’s important to let the emergency team know that as soon as they are on site, that way, they can quickly act accordingly.
Hand Sanitizer
It is important to not treat anyone else without properly washing your hands. If you are unable to wash your hands with soap and hot water, hand sanitizer is the next best option. Before touching any open wounds, whether they are your own or a family member’s, be sure that your hands are clear of bacteria.

The International Red Cross foundation has a comprehensive list of items that should always be kept in the first aid kit.

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