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First Aid Kit

February 20, 2011

I mentioned in a previous post that my philosophy regarding first aid is to only take care items/supplies that you would really use or know how to use.  For everything else, the plan is to get out ASAP.  In other words, if a child gets very sick or severely injured, bundle them up as needed to deal with shock, and carry them out to the nearest vehicle or point where rescue personnel could assist you.

You the parent are at the greatest risk, if you are alone with your young kids.  My 8 and 10 year olds are fairly prepared to help me if I am hurt.  If I become unconscious, they know to bundle me up with my clothes and sleeping quilt and then to back-track toward civilization to find help or a cell phone signal (we carry a cell phone usually).

Here is what we currently carry for hiking or backpacking trips of a few days or less…

Clockwise from top left…

  • first aid wipes / alcohol wipes – to clean out, or around, a bad cut
  • sterile gauze – to cover or pack a wound too large for a band aid
  • medical tape – for large bandages and home-made butterflies
  • chewable Tylenol – for discomfort or fever on your way back to civilization
  • Band aids – for small wounds that need some cover
  • chewable Pepto Bismol – for upset stomachs (PLEASE READ WARNINGS ABOUT REYE’S SYNDROME RISK)
  • (not shown) – chewable Benedryl – for mild allergic reactions
  • (not shown) – bandana and string/cord (from food hanging bag) for splinting breaks or binding large wounds
  • (not shown) – epipens for severe allergic reactions, if necessary
  • (not shown) – inhalers for asthma, if necessary
  • (not shown) – medications specific to your family
  • (not shown) – emergency blanket (silver plastic) – we do NOT carry these, since, if the need arises, we plan to wrap up the injured with other items such as tent or sleeping quilt or clothes from other individuals

This kit has served us well on our fairly mild adventures, but I certainly do not make any claims that this is what’s best for you and your family.  Googling this topic will provide plenty of other thoughts.  I welcome any comments and discussion on this very important topic.

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