22 Essential First Aid Kit Supplies

22 Essential First Aid Kit Supplies

It’s always better to be prepared for any “just in case” situation than to be empty-handed, wishing you had taken preventative measures.

This is where First Aid kits come in handy. They are the literal first line of defense – rendering aid before medical professionals arrive on the scene. 

Basic First Aid kits serve the primary purpose of treating and/or reducing the pain of minor injuries (scrapes, burns, and cuts). For more severe, life-threatening conditions, emergency medical kits (and those administering care) provide in-between care. In other words, First Aid Kits contain materials and information to prevent, care for those having seizures, and immobilize a broken arm. 

first aid kit supplies

The Must-Have List of First Aid Kit Supplies

These first aid kit supplies will keep you prepared for any emergency situations that should arise. 

    Instant Cold Packs – Apply instant cold therapy to minor scrapes, burns, and muscle tears to reduce pain and start the healing process.


    Curity Gauze Sponges, 12-Ply, Sterile – Ensure wounds remain healthy and clean. Avoid infections by using gauze sponges to clean debris off and pack wounds. 


    U by Kotex Fresh & Dry Premium Pantiliners, Long – Females can’t control when their menstrual cycle comes and sometimes they forget. Keep a supply of pads, tampons, and pantiliners on hand to help females get back to their daily routine ASAP. 


    Diamond Nitrile Gloves, Powder-Free – Prevent the transference of bodily fluids and contaminants when administering care to others. Using nitrile gloves provides a latex-free to avoid any potential latex allergic reactions. 


    Dynarex Bacitracin First Aid Antibiotic Ointment Packets – Scrapes, burns, and other minor skin injuries are bound to happen. Let them heal properly by using antibiotic ointment, which reduces infections. 


    Exel Stainless Steel Disposable Scalpels – If a minor surgery or extraction needs to take place, be prepared with a disposable scalpel to make clean, deep lacerations through the skin. 


    PURELL Advanced Hand Sanitizer Gel, Portable Flip Cap Bottle – Soap and water is not always available. Keep travel hand sanitizer in your emergency kit and kill 99.99% of the most common germs to keep yourself and others as safe as possible. 


    ProAdvantage Medicine Cup – Avoid cross-contamination of medicines and liquids that need to be administered to others. Use disposable medicine cups that can be packed away easily and take up minimal space. 


    Dukal 2-Ply Rolled Gauze – It’s important that open wounds are allowed the proper environment to heal. Keep their dressings in place with rolled gauze. 


    Dukal Surgical Cloth Tape – Secure loose gauze, bandages, and appendages with scissor-free cloth tape. 


    Cardinal Health ASTM Level 3 Surgical Mask – Whether dealing with a potential positive COVID-19 case or doing an emergency minor surgery on a patient (dealing with blood), wearing a mask will prevent the spread of fluids. 


    Dukal First Aid Adhesive Bandages, Plastic Adhesive – Minor cuts and scrapes happen all of the time. Help them avoid becoming more infected and keep a stash of bandages in varying shapes and sizes among your first aid kit supplies. 


    Cardinal Health Kendall Hydrophilic Foam Dressing – Keep wounds healthy and clean with hydrophilic foam dressings that protect against bacteria.


    Dynarex Hydrocortisone Cream 1%, .9g Individual Packets – Reduce pain and irritation by treating minor skin conditions such as rashes (poison oak, soap allergy, jewelry), bug bites, and itching (feminine, insect bites) with hydrocortisone cream. 


    Dynarex Antiseptic Wipes – Protect minor wounds from harmful bacteria by using antiseptic wipes prior to caring for them any further. 


    Pac-Dent ProSense Non-Contact Infrared Thermometer – It’s hard to tell what someone is sick with when they have a fever – all you know is their body is fighting something off. Reduce your risk of contracting anything by using a non-contact thermometer. 


    ADC Adsafe CPR Resuscitation Mask – Minimize the chance of cross-contamination when administering CPR to a non-breathing adult or child. 


    Monoject 1 mL Insulin Syringe, Luer-Lock Tip – Don’t spend time worrying about administering the right amount of medicine. Correctly administer liquid medication dosages without losing a drop! 


    Tidi Fluid-Resistant 2-Ply Tissue Emergency Blanket – Place an emergency blanket over an injured person’s body to prevent more heat from leaving their body. 


    Dukal Gypsona Roll Plaster Bandage – For body parts that have been injured, but need to maintain some functionality or splits are not available, plaster bandages can be used. They provide more flexibility than plaster, but more structure than normal, adhesive bandages. 


    Duracell Procell Alkaline AAA Battery – Never worry about losing medical data or being able to provide the appropriate care. By keeping AAA batteries on hand, most devices will be covered with a change of batteries. 


    3V Lithium Batteries – Replace glucose and heart rate monitors at a moment’s notice with 3V Lithium coin batteries. 

     

        first gauze wrap

        What important medications should be in a first aid kit?

        The first question to consider when adding medications to an emergency kit is who will (or potentially) use the kit. If the kit is for the general public then there’s a high chance it looks different than if assembled by a mother of two to keep in the campervan.

        The categories of basic ailments that can be cured or alleviated with the use of medications are listed below. Assemble the right kit for your and your anticipated needs.

        • Pain relievers – Whether trying to reduce pain from a second-degree burn, cuts, scrapes, or a headache, keep Aspirin, Advil, and Tylenol easily accessible to help reduce the injured person's pain.
        • Skincare – In the event of skin scrapes, burns, or rashes, be prepared with the products that will provide relief. Aloe vera gel, calamine lotion, and hydrocortisone cream are all great first lines of defense.
        • Allergies – Generic allergies can be covered with Benadryl, but for those with serious allergies, it’s important to pack adrenaline injectors (if building a home first aid kit and one is prescribed) at all times. 
        • Gastrointestinal - Anti-diarrheal medications, laxatives, and antacids play an integral role in keeping the digestive system running smoothly. 
        • Personal Medications - If creating your own first aid kit and there is a specific medication you or others in your traveling party with you need, pack extras just in case. You never know when you’ll accidentally run out or lose your current supply. 
        • Low blood sugar – Diabetics and others experiencing low blood sugar need easily digestible, fast-acting glucose. Keep juice boxes, glucose tablets, and emergency glucose injectors in First Aid bags to prevent blood sugar levels from dipping dangerously low. 

          Why should I carry Aspirin in my supply kit?

          Not only does Aspirin help reduce fevers and pain, but it also works as a blood thinner. This is why it’s important to have on hand if you encounter a person who is suspected of having a heart attack. Aspirin can help reduce the formation of more blood clots. Make sure it’s the chewable aspirin – goes down easier in an emergency.

           

          Do I have to buy a First Aid kit?

          There are numerous First Aid Kit options available. But you can also potentially save a few dollars and ensure you have exactly what you need by building a personalized kit of aid supplies for family members, yourself, and others. The First Aid kit supply list we've assembled covers everything from sterile gauze pads to personal medications based on an individual's medical history. Stock up on what you need and assemble the items in your box or bag of choice!

           

          Does every first aid kit have the same items inside?

          While there are basic First Aid supplies in every kit, some include additional items depending on who is using the kit and the expected environment. For example, an athletic trainer will likely have various athletic tapes, orthopedic wrist splints and glucose tabs in their bag, while someone who’s backpacking will likely only have essentials such as bandage roll, surgical tape, and antibiotic ointment.

           

          What non-medical items are important to keep in a first aid kit bag?

          • Emergency Information – When creating a personal emergency supply kit, including written documentation of phone numbers (family and doctors), names, and addresses of who to call in the event of an emergency. Also, write down your own information (name, DOB, address, weight) to help First Responders identify and treat you. If the safety kit is being used for a school or physician’s office, include contact information such as the location addresses for emergency centers so that anyone who uses the bag can quickly alert authorities to your location. 
          • Waste bag – Properly and safely dispose of medical waste.
          • Flashlight – Important for instances where there’s no technology available or little left to use. 
          • Whistle – Keep animals away and alert others of your presence. 
          • Notepad and waterproof pen – There may be a time when information (signs and symptoms) needs to be physically written down and these supplies can prove invaluable. 
          • First Aid manual or instruction cards – Particularly relevant for the more involved procedures. For instance, information on seizure care and choking first aid can be life-saving knowledge for someone who’s never taken a CPR or first aid course or needs extra support in the face of a crisis. 

            Do first aid kit supplies expire?

            Yes, medical supplies – even those that aren’t battery-operated – can and do expire. Check your kit regularly to make sure all of the equipment is current. To get the longest shelf life out of products, pay attention to the storing instructions on certain materials. Most do best in temperature-controlled environments, with minimal light. If anything’s expired, simply refill what you tossed out!

             

            CPR class

            What practical medical skills are useful to know in First Aid situations?

            While it’s important to be well-versed in how to use the contents of a first aid kit, it’s also essential to know how to perform practical emergency procedures. If you’re not certified already, consider getting CPR (giving rescue breaths, compressions), AED, and First-Aid training through the American Red Cross or another verified organization. The training will help you be more active in providing medical care when emergency medical service is unavailable.

             

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            The information provided by bttn on this website is not medical advice, and all materials on this website, including text and images, are for educational purposes only and are not intended to be a substitute for advice from a professional healthcare provider.