First Aid Kits for All Occasions

Be Prepared for the Battlefied or the Football Field

There's more than one way to build a first aid kit. Some specialty items are designed for use in tactical situations and others are focused more on sports injuries. Here are the most commonly requested first aid kits.

First Aid Kit Contents

Homemade first aid kit
(c) Marion Boddy-Evans

Let's start with a basic list of first aid kit contents. For the do-it-yourself first aider, these are the essential supplies for a personal first aid kit. This list of first aid kit contents is perfect to mix and match for your car, home or RV.

Sports First Aid Kits

Sports first aid kit
Image courtesy of PriceGrabber

Sports first aid kits focus on orthopedic injuries. Filled with cold packs and compression wraps, sports kits come in big packs for the whole team or small, individually sized packages.

Many of the big sports first aid kits are priced with the idea that a team or a league is footing the bill. Smaller kits are more reasonable, since parents or coaches will usually cover the cost of these out of their own pockets.

Office First Aid Kits

office first aid kit
(c) Rod Brouhard

Office first aid kits assume two things: the victims are all adults and the first aid kit will actually be used. Most office first aid kits have drugs -- not seen with kits aimed at kids. Office kits are also designed to be easily restocked after each use. Some have modular designs that require replacement parts to be purchased from the manufacturer, so be sure to ask before buying.

First Responder Kits

first responder bag
Image courtesy of PriceGrabber

First responder is a catch-all term that refers to almost any level of emergency medical response. There is no real definition of what makes a first responder kit, but some items certainly fit the category: belt packs with emergency shears and flashlights; large bags with multiple compartments, including blood pressure cuffs and stethoscopes; just about any prepackaged kit from the American Red Cross (the Red Cross loves to call everybody a "first responder").

Military First Aid Kits

military first aid kit
Image courtesy of PriceGrabber

Tactical and military first aid kits are designed to be easily deployed in very stressful situations. Many military first aid kits have clotting agents and tourniquets to help with severe bleeding.

Tourniquets are essential tools for military first aid. These kits also usually contain combination wound dressings designed to be applied quickly to severe wounds and stay in place without help.

In many military kits, suture material and scalpels are included. It's not typical for a first aid kit to include either of these tools, but in tactical situations it's important to be prepared for just about anything.

Camping First Aid Kits

Nicaraguan first aid kit contents
All this fit in a tiny bag. © Mat Honan

Camping first aid kits vary widely depending on how deep into the wilderness you're planning to go.

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