One of the most useful and important things that you can carry with you when you travel is a well-stocked first aid kit. Not only does it provide easy access to some basic medical supplies, it is much more convenient to have those items close at hand instead of having to run to a drug store when you need something. But what exactly should you put in your travel medical kit? Here are the basics that every traveler should take with them when they hit the road.
Probably the most important item to have in your first aid kit is a supply of Band-Aids. The iconic adhesive strip bandages are useful for a number of issues, including cuts, scrapes, insect bites, blisters, and more. Carry a variety of sizes to cover all of your needs.
It should go without saying, but if you’re currently taking prescription medications for any kind of ailments or existing conditions be sure to pack them in your first aid kit. You’ll need them while you’re traveling, and it is much harder to obtain replacement drugs while you’re on the road, especially if you’re visiting a foreign country.
Antiseptic Wipes and Antibiotic Ointment
You’ll face the potential when traveling of being exposed to germs and bacteria that your body is not accustomed to encountering. This can lead to infection or illness, which is the last thing you need when you’re on the road. Antiseptic wipes and antibiotic ointments can help clean cuts and scrapes, killing dangerous germs in the process. This will help prevent an infection from ever getting started.
Everyone gets headaches from time to time. Having basic painkillers such as ibuprofen or Tylenol on hand can help stave off minor aches and pains, allowing you to be more comfortable in the process. Depending on the situation, these simple medicines could actually play a vital role in how much you enjoy your trip.
One of the most common ailments that we face when away from home is the dreaded “traveler’s tummy” aka “Montezuma’s Revenge” or “Delhi Belly.” If you have Immodium or a similar anti-diarrheal in your med kit you can get relief for this affliction quickly and get back on the road to recovery. This is one of those items that you hope you never need, but are so glad to have when you do.
Anti–Motion Sickness Medications
Many people suffer from motion sickness, but it isn’t something that they experience in their day-to-day lives. Instead, it is an affliction that often appears while people are traveling and find themselves on boats, buses, airplanes, and other modes of transportation that could potentially cause motion sickness. Having medications designed specifically to deal with this issue could save your entire vacation.
Blister Pads or Moleskin
While exploring a new location we usually end up spending a lot of time on our feet. This can lead to unexpected blisters, which can become extremely painful if left untreated. Blister pads or moleskin can help save your feet from unnecessary punishment and get you back to enjoying your vacation quickly.
Electrolyte Hydration Tablets
It is not uncommon for people to become dehydrated while taking part in an active excursion or visiting a warm, humid destination. This can lead to all kinds of issues, including dizziness, disorientation, and nausea. Electrolyte tablets can help overcome those issues and get the person back on the road to recovery.
Many people find that they have trouble sleeping when they are staying in hotels, hostels, or campsites. Carrying a mild sleep aid, such as Unisom, can help. These medications are designed to make you drowsy and fall asleep easier—something we can all appreciate at times.
Round out your travel first aid kit with a set of tools that could come in handy while you’re away from home. For instance, a thermometer is useful for diagnosing a fever; tweezers will allow you to remove splinters or insect stingers and clean debris from cuts and scrapes. Medical scissors are great for cutting bandages or tape. Safety pins have a number of uses too. Be sure to carry these items in your kit at all times. You’ll be glad you have them.