(click above to listen to archived program Episode #4))
Tonights show was a continuation of a discussion of the assemblage of a Basic Emergency Medical Kit for the home. Part One.
We discussed the following:
Basic Supplies: Wound
Sterile 4×4 gauze, one large package for each family member
Sterile 2×2 gauze, one package for each family member (Can be used as eye pads too)
Clean 4×4 gauze, one package for each family member
Clean 2×2 gauze, one package for each family member.
A triangular bandage for each family member. (or make this yourself by ironing and cutting muslin and packaging in small freezer bags. These are not generally sterile)
Large safety pins also
Roller gauze. (6-8 in a variety of sizes to secure dressings)
Some chemical ice packs
A variety of band-aid styled dressings, I prefer the cloth variety, but this is a personal decision.
Butterfly bandages (and look into getting some steri-strips online also)
Elastic bandages (both small and large)
Spray bottle of normal saline (marketed as nasal saline) as gentle eye rinse.
(Sam's Club sells a package of two quite cheaply. Make one nasal use, and another eye use only.)
Three types of wound tape, paper, micropore, plaster (for multiple uses) (Get microfoam tape also if you
can find it.)
Sterile cotton swabs (about 200)
Several packages of a variety of protective medical masks. (Amazon has them on sale for 50 for $1.99)
(Sterile gauze should be placed in contact with a wound whereas the clean can be used as padding over it. Remember that although this may sound like a lot of gauze, that one serious wound will consume your supplies within just a few days. You also don't want to have to head to an emergency room during a serious emergency simply because you don't have something like adequate gauze !)
Neosporin cream, several tubes
Hydrogen peroxide 2 bottles (to start) Keep in cool dry place away from excessive light.
Isopropyl alcohol 2 bottles (flammable)
Povidone iodine in bottles, 2 bottles (Also known as Betadine. Generic is just fine)
Diphendydramine (Benadryl or generic) topical liquid for insect bites etc.
Apinol www.apinol.com Excellent pine oil based antiseptic for topical cuts, scrapes, etc.
needle nosed or fine splinter forceps (tweezers)
Hemostat (stainless steel please)
Dollar store reading glasses as magnifiers if you’re over 40, to use while removing splinters
Glass thermometer in protective casing, both rectal and oral varieties
Paramedic shears or blunt scissors. (picture above)
Vinyl medical gloves (1-2 boxes) I skip Latex entirely due to allergies to latex in so many patients and staff
Plain, inexpensive and deodorant free sanitary napkins. (Multiple uses, padding in splints etc.)
Rubber tourniquet (last two items available from www.first-aid-product.com)
For each item I mention here, you should have a source of this med for each family member. What I mean by this is that if you have infants and children, then you must stock Tylenol (acetaminophen) for EACH AGE GROUP. Drops for infants, chewables for children, and tablets for adults. The one exception is aspirin, which should not be given to children below 18 without a physician’s order, because in the presence of a viral syndrome, it is implicated in causing Reye’s Syndrome.
Aspirin Not for use in children without MD order due to Reyes Syndrome potential
Pepto Bismol Also a salicylate. Do not give to children without your pediatricians ok. Ask in advance of emergencies at your next visit.
Iosat for all family members (www.nukepills.com ) Complete info on site
Omeprazole (decreases stomach acid in periods of stress. Mostly for adults)
Claritin dissolving tabs (Loratadine) allergies
Ibuprofen (Advil etc.) Not for those with bleeding disorders, kidney or liver issues-- use
liquid in children in accordance with pediatrician’s directions.
Ipecac bottle (to induce vomiting following certain poisonings)
Always keep 30 days worth of prescription meds you use on an ongoing basis, in your home. Look into 90 day prescriptions if possible with your insurance.
I have mentioned stocking gatorade for adults and pedialyte for children. Assembling your own rehydration supplies, and gatorade kit will be covered in future.
Quick Note: In Canada, Pedialyte brand is readily available.
In Russia: Look for Oxfam Rehydration Powders. Ask the pharmacist, and they should have it usually behind the counter. They have this, or something very similar, all the way from Moscow to Vladivostok, and I know this personally.
Items you should add if you have those with these particular special needs:
Prescription glucagon injection
Insulin syringes and your injectable insulin(s)
Source of sugar or juice to treat hypoglycemia
A spare glucometer with extra battery, strips, lancets and supplies.
Insulin cooling kit, as pictured above Of course, at the last possible moment, you'd need to add insulin depending upon the emergency.
Insulin pump supplies, and pump batteries and peripherals (if you use a pump)
Allergic Emergencies (anaphylaxis):
Speak with your physician about the possibility that you or a family member should should carry an epipen.
Nebulizer (Get an inverter to operate or buy a battery operated model)
Meds (Rx) and normal saline for nebulizer treatments
Spare supplies of everything you use including hand wipes
and small plastic bags for trash. Pack these as small as you can in advance.
Dehydration can kill young children in as little as a day. Although adults can use gatorade or a homemade rehydration solution, ideally need a supply of pedialyte or similar product to avoid dehydration during vomiting or diarrheal illness. I will discuss formulating an acceptable rehydration solution with supplies at home in an upcoming article.
Nice to have as you build your Kit
Sphygmomanometer ( Manual Blood Pressure cuff with stethoscope)
Otoscope (Small plastic for ear exams, inexpensive at Wahlgreens)
Exergen Temporal Thermometer (Can determine temp without waking child)
Snake bite kit (With extractor….I prefer the Sawyer;s Extractor snake bite kit)
Finger and extremity splints Keep this simple.
One suggestion is www.first-aid-product.com
A precipitous delivery pack is also a wonderful thing to have. It may also be marketed as an emergency childbirth kit.
These are sources: These range from $8. to $15, although mine was $30.
We also discussed how wise it is to get everyone who is able bodied in your household, CPR certified, and recertified upon expiration. This should extend also to kids in your home thirteen and older. Most thirteen year olds can do fabulous CPR !
I will discuss Iosat pills, dehydration and rehydration solutions in depth at another time.
I will also discuss suturing and indications for suturing next time.
Next week, we are going to complete the discussion of items needed in our emergency home base kit, and discuss why I believe each family should have an AED, and explore sources from which you can get one.
I have some great books on the subject of preparedness I would like to mention, and we will do that next week, if time permits, or if not, the week after.
Take care and stay safe.
This is copywritten material. You may use if you credit this site. All Rights Reserved.