Every household, workplace and public building should have a first aid kit.

Why have a first aid kit?

It is important to have a first aid kit on hand as you never know when an accident may occur. Minor accidents happen every day and a first aid kit will help to treat people quickly and effectively.

What should be in a first aid kit?

A first aid kit should contain a number of different things: these should include:

  • At least 5 medium dressings; these may be used to treat cuts for example.
  • At least 2 large dressings; these can be used to treat larger cuts or dressing wounds.
  • At least 2 extra large dressings: these can be used to dress serious wounds.
  • Sterile wipes (alcohol free): these can be used to clean infected areas or open wounds.
  • Sterile gloves: these can be used when treating others to prevent cross infection. Gloves should be thrown away after use and replaced with a new pair.
  • Safety pins: these can be used to fix bandages.
  • Plasters: these can be used to cover affected areas to prevent bacterial infection and stem bleeding.
  • Blue plasters: used for covering injuries during food preparation.
  • Triangular bandages: these can be used to treat larger wounds or as a sling to support the arm.
  • A resuscitation face mask: this can be used to prevent the spread of infection when administering CPR on a casualty who has a bleeding mouth.
  • Scissors: these are used to cut plasters or bandages.
  • Tweezers: these are often used to remove small foreign bodies such as splinters.
  • Thermometer: this is used to check and monitor a person’s temperature.
  • Sterile pads: these are used to cover wounds.
  • Crepe bandages: these are used to support damaged limbs or joints.
  • Adhesive tape: these are used to fix bandages and dressings.

Additional advice

It may also be advisable to carry over the counter pain relief. It is important to keep your first aid kit well-stocked and to replace any items which may have been used. If you live or work with somebody who has a severe allergy or a condition such as asthma it may be beneficial to carry a dose of their medication in your first aid kit to use in the case of an emergency.