Essentials for Your Medicine Cabinet


Being prepared for injuries and illnesses is important for a child and adult’s well-being. Many items should be in your medicine cabinet. Yet, the odds are high that most homes are missing these essential products.
For first-aid purposes, you should always have a variety of band-aids. Keep a stock of different sizes, as no cut is alike. There may be large scrapes requiring large bandages or small paper cuts requiring small ones. Surgical tape and gauze pads are necessary for deeper cuts that do not need stitches, but require more padding. Also, keep some antibiotic ointment, such as Neosporin, to prevent infection and hydrogen peroxide for washing out scrapes and cuts. Splinters require the use of tweezers. Be sure you spend the money and get a pair that really grabs. Other items that should be on hand are butterfly closures for jagged cuts, nail scissors, fingernail clippers, toenail clippers, muscle rubs (Bengay), and cortisone cream for itchy rashes and bug bites. Finally, keep an ace bandage handy in case of emergency.

Medications that should be kept on hand include pain relievers, aspirin, nausea remedies for indigestion, cold medicines including decongestant, cough syrup for persistent coughs, and throat lozenges or sprays for sore throats. Keeping a bottle of Pepto-Bismol on hand is an excellent idea during the winter when stomach viruses are common.

There is plenty of debate over pain relievers. Acetaminophen (Tylenol) is not recommended for those who have a few drinks because it can damage the liver. Ibuprofen (Advil) reacts to a number of medications. Many people are allergic to aspirin.

Despite this, aspirin is beneficial in thinning the blood. Keep aspirin on hand, even baby aspirin will work, in case of a heart attack. The pills can save a life.

Many new parents are told to keep Ipecac syrup on hand in case of poisoning. There is debate on this issue now, as many doctors say the medicine does not help remove poison from the stomach at all. In some cases, proper treatment must be delayed until all of the ipecac is vomited by the child. Only in rare occasions is ipecac helpful. I still suggest keeping a bottle on hand, but only use it if your pediatrician has given you the okay.

Every medicine cabinet needs a thermometer. The new digital kinds work quickly and easily. They take up little room, so there is no reason to bypass this important tool. If you have older thermometers, they may contain lead. Dispose of them at your local pharmacy.

Other items that are helpful to keep on hand include cotton swabs, cotton balls, Vaseline for chapped lips or cracked skin, Epsom salts for sprains, and witch hazel for bruises.

It is important that you check and update your medicine cabinet on a regular basis. For the face, it is advisable to stack up on best vitamin c serum for face that you can find in the market too.

At the beginning of every season, you should go through your medicine cabinet, dispose of any outdated medicines, and inventory your supplies. Medications that are past their expiration date can be toxic and you want to restock the items that you have run low on.

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