How to Make Your Own First Aid Kit

How to Make Your Own First Aid Kit
Many commercial first aid kits are available, but making your own first aid kit will enable you to address specific first aid concerns you may have. These concerns may range from pre-existing medical conditions and specific risk factors to destination-specific illnesses. An added benefit is a greater familiarity with the contents of the first aid kit you make, versus a kit that was bought but never opened and inventoried.


Difficulty: Moderate

Things You’ll Need:
  • Container First aid supplies Emergency contact information
  • Container
  • First aid supplies
  • Emergency contact information
Step 1
Identify the purpose of the first aid kit (boating, hiking, camping, fishing or home) and predict the first aid situations likely to be encountered. Some issues commonly addressed by the items in first aid kits are trauma (bleeding, burns, sprains and broken bones), gastrointestinal illnesses, shock, respiratory distress and endemic diseases.
Step 2
Select an appropriate container. First aid kits that will be in moist environments, such as those used in boating or hiking, should be waterproof.
Step 3
Select items that will be used in the treatment of anticipated medical issues. Avoid items you are not qualified or trained to use or administer. Create an emergency information card to be carried with you.
Step 4
Place items methodically and carefully within the container to avoid damage. Also, bear in mind the ease with which the items may be accessed. If necessary, group similar items such as adhesive bandages in small, sealable bags.
Step 5
Keep the kit with you when engaged in the activities the kit was designed for. A boat first aid kit or car first aid kit is ineffective if it's left at home.
Step 6
Restock the kit as needed and replace any medications that have expired.

Tips & Warnings

Be sure the items comply with regulations for any areas they will be carried in, such as Transportation Security Administration (TSA) rules for carry-on and checked baggage. Also, if traveling in other countries, check with that country's consulate or embassy to ensure any medications that are brought in are legal. Some medications may require a note from your physician written on his or her letterhead.
Learn first aid skills and do not exceed your knowledge and training. Improper treatment of illnesses and injuries can compound health issues.

Article Written By David Chandler

David Chandler has been a freelance writer since 2006 whose work has appeared in various print and online publications. A former reconnaissance Marine, he is an active hiker, diver, kayaker, sailor and angler. He has traveled extensively and holds a bachelor's degree from the University of South Florida where he was educated in international studies and microbiology.

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