As I sit here typing this, my husband is lying in bed, very sick. Fever, sore throat and body aches are his main complaints. So, for my preparedness topic today, I'm going to write about first aid a little. It is times like these that I either realize that I am well prepared in the medicine area, or not ready at all. It seems like the only time children need a fever reducer is late at night, when getting to a store is either difficult or impossible. While I don't feel that it is necessary to treat every little thing with tylenol, it's gives me peace of mind to know that I have it here when I need it.
First aid goes beyond medicine though. There are lots of lists available for first aid kits and many complete kits ready to buy. My goal for this week is to go through the little kits that we already have in the cars and replenish them. With three small children, the band-aids are the first to disappear. There is a long list of items that you might consider for your -at home- first aid kit but I'll try to limit my list for a more mobile kit. One that could go in a 72 hour bag.
First and foremost, are bandages and ointment for all those little scrapes that children can't seem to help getting. Those little alcohol swabs are also handy to clean up wounds in a hurry. Just thinking about my kids and being out of doors, I need to remember the sunburn cream and the "itchy" cream - the one that makes those mosquito bites livable. For times when a band-aid just won't cover it, sterile gauze and athletic tape are very useful and an elastic ace-bandage comes in handy. Don't forget the asprin, as well as a non-asprin type pain/fever reducer. Those with small children might want to include a package of children's medicines.
There are some items that can be re-purposed to work in the first aid kit. Free paint stirring sticks work well for a splint and a maxi pad can work as an absorbent bandage. You can make your own sterile wraps by ripping an old sheet in to strips, rolling the strips up and then baking them in the oven for 30 minutes at 220 degrees. Placed into a zip-lock baggie, these strips will stay sterile until you need them. Also, did you know that cayenne pepper can be used to stop bleeding? Shake some onto a bleeding wound, and it will cauterize the bleeding vessels.
Don't forget hand sanitizer! How I wished I had packed some on my last cowboying trip. Also, small scissors and tweezers can make life much more pleasant when trying to get slivers out and cut gauze and tape. I will also include an instant cold pack, q-tips and a first aid instruction booklet. Don't forget to grab any prescription drugs on your way out the door with your 72 hour kit!
I'm linking up with Homestead Revival's Preparedness Challenge!