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First Aid Kit Contents | by TomBenedict
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First Aid Kit Contents

Contents of one of my first aid kits.


This is the kit I keep in my car. It serves two purposes:


The first is to treat minor wounds I'm likely to encounter while hiking, flying kites, doing KAP, or whatever. I carry a second kit in my hiking and KAPing gear, so this kit would be used in a secondary role in this case.


The other is to treat wounds others might have that might not be associated with hiking, kiting, etc. This is why the kit includes a pocket mask, pulse oximeter, ab pad, etc. In this case I would not be self-treating.


It is imperative that a first aid kit be kept stocked at all times. I keep a spreadsheet with the contents of all of my first aid kits on it. With it, I can inventory one or several first aid kits and get a shopping list to take with me the next time I go to the store. The spreadsheet maintains counts of how much of any given item I want to have in my kit, so restocking is very straightforward.


Not shown here are safety glasses and a notebook. The safeties are for body substance isolation (getting hit in the eye with someone else's fluids is a good way to contract unwanted disease). The notebook is for taking notes in. It's important that the pages be easy to remove. No Moleskine here! Something like a cheap pocket spiral bound notebook is better.


In case all this seems extreme, here's an exercise to try: Go get a modestly priced first aid kit and familiarize yourself with the contents. Carry it with you. Any time anyone around you needs help, offer your services. It's a little surprising how often this happens!


I highly recommend taking a basic first aid class before doing anything where you might be the only medical assistance available: long hikes, backpacking, boating, etc. The classes typically last a day or less, don't cost much, and provide you with enough information to treat most minor wounds. Add a CPR class, and you can literally become a life saver.

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Taken on December 23, 2011