Emergencies will happen when you least expect, so it’s important to be prepared with a first aid kit. Learn how to assemble your own first aid kit with the simple tips below.

Make sure you have a well-stocked first aid kit, including all the items you may need for an emergency

1. Choose a suitable sized container

The bag needs to be lightweight, waterproof, portable, and large enough to fit all the materials in.

2. Include details

Include personal items such as medications and emergency phone numbers in your kit.

3. Checklist of materials

Recommended by The Red Cross

  • 2 absorbent compress dressings (5 x 9 inches)
  • 25 adhesive bandages (assorted sizes)
  • 1 adhesive cloth tape (10 yards x 1 inch)
  • 5 antibiotic ointment packets (approximately 1 gram)
  • 5 antiseptic wipe packets
  • 2 packets of aspirin (81 mg each)
  • 1 blanket (space blanket)
  • 1 breathing barrier (with one-way valve)
  • 1 instant cold compress
  • 2 pair of nonlatex gloves (size: large)
  • 2 hydrocortisone ointment packets (approximately 1 gram each)
  • Scissors
  • 1 roller bandage (3 inches wide)
  • 1 roller bandage (4 inches wide)
  • 5 sterile gauze pads (3 x 3 inches)
  • 5 sterile gauze pads (4 x 4 inches)
  • Oral thermometer (non-mercury/nonglass)
  • 2 triangular bandages
  • Tweezers
  • First aid instruction booklet

4. The most important item

For a car or boat first aid kit, you must include a mobile phone. An old, cheap cell phone will suit.

5. Check your kit

Checking your kit regularly is essential. Look out for expiration dates, replacing any used or out-of-date materials.

 6. Location

Keep a first aid kit in your home and in your car, in an easily accessible location. Make sure to tell your kids frequently, as well as guests.