Whether at home or in the office, it's always a good idea to have a first aid kit to hand to help heal minor cuts, bruises and injuries. However, a first aid kit will be no use if it is low on supplies, and searching for bandages or dressings that have long since been used can waste valuable time. Make sure your first aid kit is well stocked by regularly carrying out a contents inspection. A checklist will help you do this.
Bandages and dressings are an important part of any first aid kit, and allow you to treat a bleeding wound by stemming the blood flow. This will result in saving valuable time as you seek professional help for more serious injuries. Dressings range from small finger or eye dressings to larger bandages designed for larger limbs.
Band-Aids should also be in plentiful supply, to provide protection against infection for small cuts. Again, these are available in a range of sizes.
Antiseptic Cleansing Products
It is important to protect against infection when suffering from an open wound, ao your first aid kit should contain a number of antiseptic products that you can apply to such a cut. Some kits have bottles of hydrogen peroxide or thieves oil to help kill any harmful bacteria. You can also purchase antiseptic wipes to remove foreign bodies from cuts and help a wound to heal quickly.
Burns from scalding water, too much sun or an irritating chemicals can cause considerable pain and discomfort. Make sure your kit contains zinc oxide cream to soothe the burning and stinging sensation, as well as vitamin E oil, which can be applied to the burn area to prevent scarring.
Make sure your kit has a tube of hydrocortisone cream to help soothe the pain, discomfort and itchiness caused by a rash. You can also buy calamine lotion to treat a rash, as well as antihistamine creams, which reduces swelling.
If the rash is the result of an allergic reaction, make sure the patient receives professional help to avoid or minimise the risk of anaphylactic shock.
Your first aid kit should have a supply of latex gloves, which must always be worn when treating patients with bleeding wounds. You should also have a face mask, which helps prevent the transfer of bacteria and other pathogens in the event that you have to give someone mouth-to-mouth resuscitation.
First aid kits should also contain a pair of scissors for trimming bandages to size, and some safety pins to help fix the dressing in place.
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