We’ve reviewed the best first aid kits stocked with the essential supplies and tools you need for emergencies that may come up when you’re out there camping, in your vehicle or at home. A first aid kit is a basic necessity to have in your home, office and car and bring along when embarking on a road trip, going boating or venturing into the great outdoors.
Choosing the best first aid pack can be tricky though as each kit will have a different selection of first aid items. We’ve got you covered with our first aid kit reviews and buying guide that will give you the knowledge you need in order to choose a top rated first aid pack that matches your needs. Below are our 10 ten picks.
How To Choose A First Aid Kit – Buying Guide
Intended Use or Type Of Trip
Before deciding on what first aid kit to buy, it’s important to consider how you intend to use it and what type of trips you go on. This will help you choose the best medical kit for your needs. Let’s take a look at the typical situations and the ideal type of kit for each.
- Home – With a first aid kit for home use, you want a pack equipped with adequate supplies for your family members. It should be stocked with a vast array of bandages, antiseptic ointments and medication to treat any type of injury that might happen at home.
- Office – For the office, you want a kit that meets or exceeds the OSHA and ANSI guidelines for the number of people in the workplace. It should also be equipped with tons of medical supplies to tackle the typical workplace mishaps. A hard case that you can hang on a wall is ideal.
- Camping – In addition to the essential first aid supplies such as ointments, bandages, and tablets, a camping first aid kit should also have first aid tools such as scissors, safety pins, and tweezers. A survival medical kit that includes survival items such as an emergency blanket is ideal.
- Hiking and Backpacking – A backpacking and hiking first aid kit should be compact and lightweight but not at the expense of the contents. Make sure the kit has the essentials for treating abrasions, scrapes, blisters, bug bites, and other injuries likely to occur on your adventure. It’s also a good idea to get a kit equipped with a glow stick, a compass, and a whistle.
- Boat – For boating, you want the supplies contained in a water-resistant or waterproof case and items protected in waterproof pouches. You also want the kit to have all the essential medical and survival items you might need in the event of an emergency on a boat from closure strips, pain killers to a compass and whistle.
- Car – For your car, you want a convenient first aid pack you can stow in your glove compartment so you have bandages, medication, and other supplies and tools you might need in the event of a car emergency. Having survival items such as seatbelt cutter, glass smasher, blanket or poncho, and whistle is also important.
Essential First Aid Items List
It’s also important to ensure the kit has the essentials medical supplies and tools you’re likely to need in the event of an emergency. Here are some of the essential items a medical first aid kit should have.
- Bandages – Bandages are a key item when it comes to medical kits. Even a basic first aid kit should have an assortment of bandages. Also, they can be the first item to run out so be sure to replenish them regularly.
- Pads – Pads are vital for treating large wounds and wounds in difficult areas. Like with bandages, you want to make sure you get a variety of pads and replenish the supply regularly.
- Ointments – With any cut or injury comes the risk of infection. Cleaning the wound with antibiotic ointment kills bacteria and prevents infection.
- Wipes – Wipes come handy for cleaning small cuts and abrasions and clearing debris. They also help clean the area around a wound before applying bandages and tabs.
- Closure strips – Closure strips are useful for binding deeper cuts and stopping the bleeding. These are especially important when going on boating and outdoor adventures.
- Cold Packs – This is a vital item especially when camping or hiking. Swelling can reduce mobility. A cold pack reduces pain and also aids recovery.
- Pain Killers – Many first aid kits come with three different types of pain reliever tablets: aspirin, non-aspirin, and ibuprofen.
- Burn cream – With home and camping first aid kits, burn cream is an essential item to have in your kit. It’s absent from many first aid kits though so it’s always important to confirm whether it’s included.
- Splints –Splits in a first aid kit help to restrict movement and keep any broken or dislocated fingers stable.
- Scissors – You will find scissors in almost every first aid kit as they have many applications from cutting bandages and pads to cutting clothes to create a tourniquet.
- Tweezers – In a first aid situation, tweezers can be used for plucking out splinters embedded into the skin or plucking debris out of a wound.
- Cotton Tip Applicator – Their function in first aid kits is to clean out wounds and also to add ointment to the wound.
- CPR Face Mask –You can, of course, give CPR without a face mask but this allows you to stay safe and hygienic while doing so.
- First Aids Guide – A first aid guide that provides vital information on how to administer first aid is important if you’re not a trained first responder.
- Gloves – In an emergency situation, it’s unlikely you‘ll be able to sanitize your hands before handling an injury. Gloves protect the person from getting the first aid and also the person delivering it.
- Tape/Safety Pins – Tape and safety pins have numerous uses in an emergency situation. For example, they ensure bandages and pads stay put.
- Safety pins – Safety pins are a great way to keep bandages in place and everything in order.
- Sewing kit – Some wounds are so deep and wide that they need stitches. This is where a sewing kit comes in and can be a life-saver.
Additional Survival Items
There’re two categories of first aid items: first aid supplies and survival items. If you’re getting a kit for your car or for outdoor adventures, it’s a good idea to choose a survival medical kit equipped with these additional survival items:
- Compass – A compass can help guide your way if you’re in a car emergency or stranded in the wild and technology has failed you.
- Emergency Blanket or Poncho – An emergency blanket or poncho comes handy in an emergency situation when hiking or stuck in a car or in the event of a storm.
- Glow Stick – In the event of an injury or accident when outdoors, a glow stick is can help rescuers locate you easily.
Whistle – A loud whistle can alert anyone in the larger vicinity that you’re in trouble and help you get help quickly.
Q: What A Normal First Aid Kit Contains?
Q: Why Do I Need A First Aid Kit On My Trip?
Q: Where Should I Keep My First Aid Kit?
Globo Surf Overview
If you’re looking for one of the best first aid kits it’s important to get one that matches your situation. Hopefully, our first aid kit reviews and guide have helped you determine exactly what you need in your first aid kit so you’re able to select the best survival medical kit for your needs.