You never know when the next minor injury is going to happen (or where), but you can be ready to take care of those cuts, scrapes and bug bites at a moment’s notice with a well-stocked first aid kit.
You can find pre-packaged first aid kits at the local drugstore, and they’ll do the job in a pinch if you find yourself part-way through a weeklong road trip and realize you’ve forgotten to pack one.
But it’s always better to make your own homemade first aid kit because then you know exactly what’s in it, and you can double up on items you know you’ll quickly use up.
The main drawback of relying on a store-bought first aid kit is really one of laziness. You buy it, assume it’s going to have everything you need and never take the time to dig through it and familiarize yourself with the contents.
That false sense of security could let you down when your child breaks out after getting bit by some unknown bug and you realize that drugstore first aid kit you bought only has bandages, antiseptic wipes and tweezers… no itch relief cream.
Again, the benefit of putting together your own first aid kit is getting to handpick what goes in it.
If you’re here reading the Swanson Health Blog, you’ll also get to swap in your favorite all-natural products for many over-the-counter items.
Checklist: All Natural First Aid Kit
- Don’t forget your medications, a list of emergency contacts and contact information for your primary healthcare provider.
- Check your kit on a regular basis, especially before any trips.
- Always keep a flashlight in your kit, along with spare batteries. Check these each time you check the rest of your kit.
- Check expiration dates and replace anything that’s past its prime.
The list below is a general checklist of the most basic items any first aid kit should have.
These are the essentials you should always have on hand in your car or at your desk at work if your employer doesn’t provide one for you.
However, there are a lot of specific situations and places that may call for additional items.
For example, you’d want to create a more customized first aid kit for camping, hiking or boating.
In those cases, use this list of 15 key items as a starting point and add additional products as needed for the situation.
15 Key Items for a DIY All Natural First Aid Kit
14 gauze rolls
25-10 gauze pads
41 roll of sports tape (10 yards x 1 inch)
6Small bottle of aspirin
71 one-ounce tube of anti-itch cream
81 emergency space blanket
91 breathing barrier (with one-way valve)
102 pair of nonlatex gloves
11Small pair of scissors
132 reusable elastic bandages (2-4 inches wide)
142 triangular bandages
In your car, at your desk or in your home, keeping a first aid kit handy will keep you prepared when minor emergencies call for quick attention.