‘First-Aid’ NOT Second Aid - (Survival First-aid Kit)

Before my quest into “survival prepping” began, my first-aid kit consisted of a box of band-aids and a tube of Neosporin in the top drawer of my office desk. Oh yeah, and some peroxide and cotton balls for good measure.  And, for the most part, this worked quite well for the paper-cut sort of injuries or random blisters (darn those shoes!) encountered in a day.

Of course that was when I was working in the cement jungle.  The wilderness jungle will be a whole different story.  From tripping over a tree root and breaking a leg, down to the splinter lodged in your finger causing a severe infection; both will be equally life threatening if you don’t have the proper necessities and at least a basic knowledge of first-aid.

To find the aloof First-Aid kit I began searching the kits themselves. Let me tell you, there are tons of them out there.  They have them for schools, businesses, cars, boats; sports teams … I mean everyone seems to have there own special kit for their own specific needs.  There is even one specifically for women (probably has a nail file, lip stick, mirror and breath mints … oh yeah, band-aids.) 

The main thing I found is that your first-aid kit should be portable. Well, I thought … that really narrows things down!  I mean, our handbags are portable??  Right?

Some suggestions varied from as basic as a small tackle box to a zip-lock baggie - which is what I had been using. 

But after looking at some of the items that could be included in a kit – it seems the items will actually dictate the size of the kit.

The “survival first-aid” kit the list is kinda lengthy, however, here are just some of the many items that could be included in the kit: dressings for everything from minor scrapes to arterial bleeds and broken bones; including band aids, eye dressings, triangular bandages, surgical sponges, tampons (yes, for us, but also to stop bleeding from a deep wound), feminine pads (again for us AND large open wounds), steri-strips to use as stitches, triple antibiotic ointment, eyewash, peroxide, alcohol, betadine, aspirin, Tylenol, and Benadryl, acetaminophen and/or ibuprofen , tweezers, alcohol wipes, antiseptic hand cleaner, medical adhesive tape, burn treatment, four inch sterile gauze, elastic bandages, several sizes of adhesive bandages, insect bite swabs,  bandage scissors, salt tablets, instant cold packs, chemical ice packs, exam gloves (for protection silly not exams), a barrier device for CPR (thanks to the new AHA guidelines in some instances we can just use chest compressions – remember ‘Stayin Alive?)

You may also want to include a couple of wool blankets for shock treatment (these can also be used as a make-shift stretcher), tourniquets and several stakes (to use as splints), a notebook and pencil (ink runs dry a pencil will always write), and miniature chocolate bars (for energy – hello low blood sugar?) and some signal flares.

It is critical that you also learn at least the basic life-saving techniques.  The best kit in the world does no one any good without someone skilled in the use of the items.

Some suggested courses are CPR, how to use an Epi-Pen (for anaphylaxis shock), learning the Heimlich maneuver, how to stop bleeding, how to treat a person in shock, how to treat heat stroke and, what to do to treat low blood sugar and hypothermia.

Now, I’m sure after reviewing the list above it seems a little overwhelming - just as everything in preparing for survival is. 

The key here is one step at a time.  First pull out what you already have on hand (you’d be surprised), then make a list of things you would like to include in your kit.  Watch for sales flyers from your local pharmacy for weekly sales – a lot of times their store-brands are better priced than the brand name products (remember injuries know no brand).

Ladies, prepare to protect your health like your life depended on it - it just might some day.

- Survivor Jane

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