What to put in your First Aid Kit
First Aid kits need to be easily accessible in case an emergency situation arises. The kit should be well organised, ideally in a bag with compartments to allow you to quickly grab what you need. It is most important that the kits contents are good quality – often cheap kits will not be of sufficient quality should you need to use them.
Your kit should contain a First Aid book or instructions, and contents to treat: major and minor bleeding, burns, breaks and sprains.
The kit should not contain medication. First Aid kits for a car should be in soft padded cases or secured within the car.Essential contents:
Tough cut scissors – strong enough to cut through clothes
A face shield to protect yourself when doing mouth to mouth resuscitation
Gloves – non sterile to protect you and sterile for treating someone with deep wounds or burns
Sterile medical wipes to clean a wound
Wound dressings of various sizes
Micropore tape to secure dressings and tape fingers and toes, also useful for labelling things
A couple of calico triangular bandages (ensure they are calico not a cheap version made of paper) these are some of the most useful things in your kit. Ideal, sterile, non-fluffy material to stop bleeding, can be used for slings and support bandages and far easier than a dressing to secure on head, knee and elbow wounds.
Eye dressings, can also be used as small dressings for babies and toddlers.
Sterile saline vial – for irrigating a wound, or washing grit from an eye
Crepe bandage – for supporting a sprain or strain
Plasters – for short term covering of a minor wound, (do not use for more than an hour or so as they cause wounds to become soggy).Additional useful contents:
Burn gel or a burns dressing – to apply to a burn after cooling
Instant ice pack – at home you can use a bag of frozen peas – Ensure it is wrapped in a cloth as it can cause ice burns.
A foil blanket to keep the casualty warm, crucially important in helping to prevent them going into shock. They should ideally be insulated from the ground and have this wrapped round them to retain their body heat.
Steri-strips, great to help close gaping wounds. Always get major or deep wounds swiftly seen by a medical professional.
Sterile tweezers – for removing small splinters, that can easily be grasped and pulled out in the same direction that they went in (nothing else should ever be removed from a wound unless by a medical professional)