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By Casey De Farria
Casey De Farria
23 Feb, 2021

What do I need to include in our family first aid kit?

Band-aids… bandages… antiseptic cream… these are the items that we tend to think about when we are putting a first aid kit together.

But first aid kits are so much more than that – and being prepared for every situation possible is vital when it comes to babies and children.

So what does a first aid kit need? Where should it be kept?

You should have a first aid kit available in the home, and one in the car for when you are out and about.

The below is what we suggest for a comprehensive, child-friendly family first aid kit;

  • Noisy, bright toys and books that are exclusive to the kit – this means they will work well in distracting your little patient as you administer the first aid that they require
  • A kitchen timer – Children are more likely to cooperate if they know that there is an endpoint. Set a timer and explain that once it goes off, you will stop what you are doing
  • A cold pack – kept in the fridge or freezer for bumps, swelling, bruising
  • Band-aids or plastic strips in assorted shapes – for bleeding wounds
  • An antiseptic cream of your choice – for wounds
  • A digital underarm thermometer
  • A rescue blanket – to keep an injured person warm
  • Adhesive tape – to keep dressings in place and hold bandages together
  • Eye pads – for eye injuries such as cuts
  • Paper or styrofoam cups – for eye injuries such as foreign bodies
  • Saline – for flushing eyes and cleaning wounds
  • Gloves – to protect yourself, and blown up like a balloon they provide great distraction
  • Scissors
  • Tweezers
  • Splinter probes – to make removal of splinters easier
  • A light stick – for use in the dark to attract attention, for instance, when camping or bushwalking
  • Wound closure strips – good for holding lacerations together
  • Zip-lock plastic bags – for amputated parts
  • Safety pins – to hold triangular slings in place
  • Assorted bandages
  • A triangular bandage – a sling for arms or for splinting limbs (tie them or use them to apply pressure)
  • Antiseptic wipes
  • Sterile gauze swabs – useful for everything!
  • Non-stick dressing – for grazes and/or minor burns until you get medical help
  • A combine dressing pad – pressure dressing for bleeding
  • Heavyweight bandages – pressure bandages for snake and funnel-web spider bites (if you have snakes around, make sure you have at least 4 snake bite bandages)
  • Vomit bags
  • A CPR guide
  • Freezing spray for ticks, e.g Wartoff
  • Red-coloured hand towel
  • A first-aid guide – we suggest ‘A Life. A Finger. A Pea Up a Nose.’ CPR KIDS essential First Aid Guide for Babies and Children, written by CPR Kids Founder, Sarah Hunstead.

And remember, it is important to;

  1. Keep first aid kits out of reach of children
  2. Keep medicines separate from your first aid kit as they expire quickly
  3. Regularly check your first aid kit to replace expired items
  4. Pack first aid kits for holidays, too!

Medications to have on hand include:

  • Oral rehydration solution
  • Age appropriate pain relief such as paracetamol and ibuprofen
  • Antihistamine
  • Tick freezing spray
  • Antiseptic cream of your choice
  • Anti-itch cream of your choice

Remember to check the expiry dates regularly!

Information is taken from CPR KIDS essential First Aid Guide for Babies and Children – ‘A Life. A Finger. A Pea Up a Nose.’ Written by CPR Kids Founder, Sarah Hunstead.

FREE VIDEO: Choking First Aid for Babies and Children

In this video paediatric nurse and founder of CPR Kids Sarah Hunstead steps you through the prevention, recognition and response to choking in babies and children. Essential knowledge for every family that you don’t want to miss.

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