Health Advocate Blog

Essential inventory for your first aid kit

Summertime often means more time spent outside at the park, beach, lake, pool, or even just your own backyard. While being outdoors is fun, it also brings potential risks for injuries, including cuts and scrapes, sunburn and bug bites, among others. However, being prepared with a proper first aid kit to treat these minor, yet common, issues, you can relax and enjoy your summer knowing you are ready for anything. Whether you buy a first aid kit or decide to make your own, here are a few essentials items you should make sure are included.

Summertime-specific essentials:

  • Sunscreen, to guard against sunburn
  • Lip balm with sunscreen/SPF
  • Aloe, which is great for soothing sunburns
  • An anti-itch lotion such as Calamine in case you encounter poison ivy
  • Antihistamines to combat summer allergies
  • Eye drops, to help with dry or itchy eyes brought on by allergies
  • A small magnifying glass that can help identify a tick on your skin
  • Insect repellent, to keep away mosquitoes and other pests

You should also consider keeping the following information in your kit or having it somewhere easily accessible in your car, house or saved on your cell phone:

  • Contact information for all your doctors, including pediatricians, allergists, dentists, and other specialists. Also include phone numbers for your local emergency service providers and a phone number to reach Poison Control.
  • A written list of all prescription medications you and your family members currently take; also note on this list which medications, if any, you or your family members are allergic to.
  • Any prescribed or over-the-counter medications your family regularly takes, including epinephrine, antacids, pain relievers, etc.

Don’t forget to check the expiration dates on any medications, creams, and other treatments that are already in your kit. If you find expired items, dispose of them safely and replace them with items that have not expired.