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How to Fix Up a First Aid Kit

First aid kits are a must-have in any emergency plan. Even though you can buy these pre-made, if you go this route, it’s a good idea to check the kit contents and the expiration dates, just to make sure you have everything you need.

Compile a First Aid Kit

You can, of course, also make your own. The American Red Cross says that a first aid kit for a family of four should include:

  • Two pairs of non-latex gloves
  • Two 5 x 9 inch absorbent compress dressings
  • Adhesive cloth tape (10 yards x 1 inch)
  • Bandages and gauze
    • One 3-inch wide roller bandage
    • One 4-inch wide roller bandage
    • Five 3 x 3 inch sterile gauze pads
    • Five 4 x 4 inch sterile gauze pads
    • 25 Adhesive bandages in a variety of sizes
    • Two triangular bandages
  • Scissors
  • Tweezers
  • Antibiotic ointment
  • Five antiseptic wipe packets
  • Hydrocortisone ointment
  • Oral thermometer (be sure it is not glass and does not contain mercury)
  • Breathing masks with one-way valve
  • Instant cold pack
  • First aid instruction book
  • Blanket/space blanket
  • Personal items, such as
    • Medication (including prescriptions and other health-related items)
    • Emergency phone numbers

Ready.gov also suggests making sure you have over-the-counter medications on hand, such as:

  • Pain relievers
  • Anti-diarrheal
  • Antacid
  • Laxative

If you’re making your own kit, store items in airtight bags and a sturdy container that’s easy to carry, says Ready.gov. The Red Cross also recommends keeping a first aid kit in your car and another in your home.

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