5 Essential Items That Should Be in Your First Aid Kit

We don’t often think of our first aid kits. Most of the time they are thrown in our medicine cabinet, not to be touched until they’re needed again.

Not sure what you should include in your first aid kit? We’re here to help. Here are the five essential items that you should include in your first aid kit.

1. Wound Care

One of the staples of a first aid kit should be bandages. Whether you have children who bump and fall, or you trip and fall yourself, you’ll always need a few bandages and gauze handy.

Always make sure that you have other wound care supply items such as:

  • Alcohol swabs or solution for disinfection
  • Antibiotic cream, used for prevention of infections
  • Scissors to cut dressings
  • Medical tape

2. Medicines

You ate too much Mexican food for lunch, and now you have explosive heartburn. You desperately need a quick fix to get you through the rest of the day. You head to your medicine cabinet and there’s no Tums left!

Don’t let this scenario happen to you.

All of these medications should already be in stock at your home. But if you’re like the rest of the world, you’ve let them go expired from lack of use. Kick that habit and refill your stock!

Some key medications you should always keep stocked in your first aid kit:

  • Fever reducers such as Ibuprofen or Acetaminophen
  • Calcium carbonate, like Tums, for the times your tummy feels upset
  • Loperamide Hydrochloride, an anti-diarrheal
  • Acetylsalicylic Acid, or more well-known as aspirin, can also be used for a variety of ailments
  • Antihistamines, in case you have an allergic reaction or the summer pollen is getting to you

3. Diagnostics

Need to check your blood pressure after a stressful day with the kids? Perhaps your fever spiked in the middle of the night. Diagnostic equipment is another essential you should be keeping in your kit.

Some of these helpful diagnostic items include:

  • Thermometer (digital ear thermometers work well for children and the elderly)
  • Stethoscope
  • Blood pressure monitor

4. Fracture Supplies

Chances are you won’t use these items at home. Are you traveling soon or going on a hiking excursion? You’ll want to stock up on these first-aid kit essentials.

Some supplies you should keep handy:

  • Splints
  • Slings
  • Medical tape or gauze

5. Heat and Cold Packs

These cold or heat packs can be used for a bunch of different things. And whether you’re keeping these in your first aid kit at home, or using them during long summer road trips, you’ll be glad you had them handy.

Both hot and cold packs are used in case of late night Charley horses or a thrown out back after weeding the lawn. Most of these come in instant, ready to use options for on the go application.


You should always be prepared for minor injuries and illnesses that may spring up.

Keep your kit stocked regularly. When you notice that something is nearly empty, replace it. Of course, you won’t use all of the items on this list. For example, you may need additional medications if you have a chronic illness like asthma or allergies.

While you may never need some of these items, it’s better to be prepared for the worst.