What makes a good first aid kit?
First aid kits run the gamut from small plastic boxes with a few bandages and an antiseptic spray, to kits that could nearly completely equip an EMT. What kind of a first aid kit should you buy?
Emergency situations are unpredictable. Anyone at anytime could be faced with a car accident, a household emergency, victims of violence, or a serious sports or workplace injury which requires immediate, lifesaving emergency treatment. While these things sometimes cannot be avoided, the better prepared you are, the better the outcomes.
When pondering the right first aid kit to buy, here are a couple of questions you could ask yourself:
Q. What is my first aid training?
A. You may have previous first aid or emergency medical training. In your case, the more tools you have available, the better you will be equipped to handle a situation.
If you have not had emergency medical training, or need a refresher, there is no better time to do it. There are quite a few excellent online programs to bring you up to speed. Here are a few basic things everyone should know:
- How to stop a wound from bleeding
- How to treat someone in shock
- How to administer CPR
- How to clean a wound
- How to apply a splint
- How to treat a burn
- How to wash chemicals or foreign objects from eyes
- What to do with a possible neck or spine injury
- What to do when someone is choking
Training is key and you should know how and in which situations to use each item in your kit.
Q. Do I need a specialized, or general use first aid kit?
A. It's good to have a general purpose first aid kit around the house, or in your car. But if you are frequently in a situation where certain types of injuries might be more prevalent, such as on a construction site, or at sporting events, you might consider a first aid kit which is geared to those types of injuries such as the My Medic "Moto Medic" specialty motorcycle first aid kit.
Q. Is my first aid kit portable?
A. Because accidents and injuries don't always occur within a few feet of where you've stored your first aid supplies, it's important to have you kit in a bag you can grab and go immediately.
The best kits are put into specialized bags which are rugged, contain a lot of pockets and compartments to facilitate good organization of the items within and are easy to carry with comfortable straps and handles. Take a look at the My Medic "Recon" first aid kit that is packed into a high quality backpack with padded shoulder straps.
Q. Will it be easy to resupply my kit?
A. Some of the cheaper kits you see on Amazon and a few places look nice, but when it comes time to replace some items you've used, it's next to impossible to find the same items again, or you can't buy them individually. One reason we like My Medic first aid kits so well is that the company is completely dedicated to designing, equipping and selling the very best first aid kits. They make it easy and economical to replace the supplies in your kit as you use them.
Q. How important is organization?
A. Very important. You might think it's ok to buy a bunch of loose first aid supplies and dump them into a backpack, and it is better than nothing. But think how you might deal with a real emergency situation where seconds could mean the difference between life and death.
Having a well organized emergency medical kit where items are grouped together according to use and where you can quickly find what you need is crucial.