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As I wrote last September, I have a fairly decent first aid kit. It includes everything from a large variety of bandages to pain killers, antibiotics, essential oils, trauma supplies, first aid books, and equipment such as braces, splints and a blood pressure monitor.
Since then, however, Ebola and now measles have become a threat and it is only a matter of time where my first aid kit will be called into play to protect my household from contamination from sickness, or worse, a pandemic.
As I try to cover all contingencies, I have come up with six additional items well suited to the prepper’s first aid kit. These are all items that are commonly available and low in price. Not only that, you may already have a number on hand.
Wouldn’t this be a good time to gather them together with the rest of your first aid items?
6 More Items You May Have Overlooked in Your First-Aid Kit
Hazardous Waste Garbage Bags: Following Ebola, this was the first new item I sought for my first aid kit. These red bags are clearly marked as “Biohazardous/Infectious Waste” and include a biohazard symbol. They come in many sizes and can be used to discard bandages, compresses, needles, tissues, clothing, and all manner of contaminants. They are perfect as a trash can liner for the sick room.
Since disposition of hazardous medical supplies may not be immediate, it will be important to keep contaminants separated from the rest of the garbage; my plan is to take the sealed hazardous waste bags and double then triple bag then in hefty bags.
Link: Medical Action Infectious Waste Bag
Razor Blades: You might be wondering why the heck razor blades are suggested for the first aid kit. The single most important reason is that in order to get a proper fit with your N95 or N100 mask , you are going to need to have a clear patch of skin. If you are ever in a situation where a protective mask is required, it will be handy to have razor blades right there in your kit, ready to go.
It also might be a good idea to have a hank of denim in your FAK so that you can strop the used blades and give them an indefinite life. See How to Sharpen Razor Blades for the Long Term.
Link: Bic Twin Disposable Shaver for Men, 3 – 10 packs
Whiskey, Bourbon or other Spirits: The higher the alcohol content, the better. Spirits can be used to sterilize instruments and clean wounds. Unlike isopropyl alcohol, spirits can be ingested internally to dull the patients pain prior to an invasive procedure when anesthetics are unavailable. Most definitely, whiskey, bourbon, or other spirits belong in the first aid trauma kit.
Oil of Oregano: Oregano essential oil is one of natures most powerful antibiotics. It is also considered to be antiviral, antibacterial, antifungal, anti-allergenic, antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, and anti-parasitic. Perhaps most notably, oregano essential oil is an anti-microbial with a demonstrated ability to inhibit the growth of bacteria and fungi.
Mixed in a lotion or with a bit of coconut oil, Oregano oil makes a perfect hand sanitizer that will not expire. See: 25 Ways to Use Oregano Essential Oil for Health and Wellness.
Link: Spark Naturals Oregano Essential Oil, NOW Foods Oregano Oil
Chicken Bouillon: There is a reason why chicken soup is considered a cure-all for colds and other illnesses. It works. According to Medline and the NIH:
The steam from chicken soup may open up congested noses and throats. Soup also provides fluid, which is important for fighting infection. Some researchers suggest that substances in chicken soup reduce the inflammation associated with the common cold, thus providing some relief of symptoms.
Although researchers have not been able to prove that chicken soup helps cure the common cold or other illnesses, you may want to take advantage of these apparent healing properties.
Since it is not convenient to store dozens of cans of chicken soup in your first aid kit, consider chicken bouillon which is cheap, portable, and has an infinite shelf life.
Link: Tone’s Bouillon Cubes, Chicken, 32 Ounce
Flexible Drinking Straws: The final uncommon item is the ubiquitous drinking straw. If you have ever been down for the count, you know how difficult it is to drink out of cup or bottle when you can barely hold your head up. In addition, drinking from a straw is more sanitary in that after doing so, the straw can be disposed of in a hazardous waste bags; no washing required.
Link: Crystalware Plastic Flexible Straws, Individually Wrapped
Other Uncommon First Aid Items
In addition to these six items, take a few moments to look over your first aid kit to ensure that you also have these additional uncommon items that were described in the article 8 Uncommon First Aid Items.
Liquid Bandage such as New-Skin
Tampons and Maxi-pads
Self-Adhering Cohesive Wrap Bandages or Vet Wrap
Hemostatic Agent such as Quikclot
The Final Word
No one wants to be sick but when you are, it is comforting to have a caregiver that is well prepared and that has taken steps to ensure your comfort as well as their own safety from contaminants.
I am always on the lookout for things I may have overlooked when putting together my own first aid kit. Most especially, I keep an eye peeled for items that have multiples uses. With the exception, perhaps, of the hazardous waste bags, the six items today meet that criteria. No comment on the spirits, if the shoe fits, put it on!
Enjoy your next adventure through common sense and thoughtful preparation!
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For your convenience, here are the items referenced in today’s article.
Medical Action Infectious Waste Bag: Of everything listed, this is the one that may not be readily available at your local drugstore. These come in a variety of sizes so keep in mind that if you plan to use a hazardous waste bag to line a wastepaper basket, measure first.
Bic Twin Disposable Shaver for Men, 3 – 10 packs: These are certainly cheap enough. As I mentioned in the article, it might also be handy to store a hank of denim fabric that can used to sharpen your razor blades again and again.
Spark Naturals Oregano Essential Oil or NOW Foods Oregano Oil: Here two options for you. I have personally stashed away a goodly supply of Oregano essential oil for SHTF purposes. It is one of my go to oils, and luckily, it is inexpensive.
Crystalware Plastic Flexible Straws, Individually Wrapped: I won’t say anything if you decide to snag a few extras every time you dine out. Otherwise, as with almost everything else on this list, they are dirt cheap. You may also fond them at the Dollar Store.
New-Skin Liquid Bandage, First Aid Liquid Antiseptic: I have been using New Skin for years. It is an antiseptic, invisible, flexible, and waterproof. It works.
Super Glue – The Original: This is the original Super Glue brand. Also check out Krazy Glue or Gorilla Brand Super Glue.
Pac-Kit Self-Adhering Cohesive Wrap, 2″ Wide: I first learned about self-adhesive bandages when my dog came home from the vet such a bandage wrapped around his leg. A light went off telling me I needed to add some to my first-aid kit. And so I did.
Quikclot Sport Brand Advanced Clotting Sponge: A must for any first aid or emergency kit, Quikclot Sport stops moderate to severe bleeding until further medical help is available.
3M N95 Particulate & Respirator Mask: This is an inexpensive mask that can be used in a variety of emergency situations. They come in a box of 20 and are NIOSH-certified. The molded cone design is fluid and splash resistant and will greatly reduces your exposure to airborne particles.
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Essential Oils for the First Aid Kit
Consider adding an assortment of health and wellness related essential oils to your first aid kit. At a minimum, include melaleuca (tea tree), lavender, oregano, peppermint, rosemary, and clove oils. At a cost of less than $45, these six essential oils will serve you well in a wide variety of first aid and emergency situations.
For an even broader selection of oils consider this Spark Naturals Health and Wellness Kit which includes a total of 10 oils and blends, nicely packaged on a tin that is perfect for your first aid kit. And note that with any purchase from Spark Naturals you will enjoy a 10% discount by using code BACKDOORSURVIVAL at checkout.