Summer time is a lot of fun, especially if you are a kid. During the summer, our kids spend a lot of time outdoors either swimming in the ocean or roller blading down the boardwalk. I also spend a lot of time bandaging scrapes, dealing with bee stings, and the other inevitable minor first aid situations that go along with having active kids.
Because of this, I always try to go through the medicine cabinet at least once a year. There are several reasons for this: it’s a good idea to take stock of what you have in order to purchase missing items; and it’s a good idea to check the condition of the supplies that you do have. Discard outdated and damaged supplies.
Here are some supplies that I keep in our medicine cabinet:
You can never have too many bandages! Especially if you have an active family. I like to have several sizes of bandages just in case. One tip I’ve found: it’s best to NOT purchase the fancy bandages. Not only do they cost more, but I’ve found that if I purchase fancy bandages, my children actually will use more bandages. It’s best to keep to the standard bandages for this reason!
Pain Reliever/Fever Reducer
I always keep pain medication on hand. If you have several age groups of children, you may need to have several different kinds of pain relievers. For example, we have pain reliever for infants, junior pain relief(for kids 2-11), and adult pain relief.
This is good for allergic reactions, and for allergies. In our area, allergies are very common. Even if the pollen count in your area is not too high, it’s still a good idea to have an antihistamine on hand just in case.
We live in a coastal area surrounded by several swamps. During August and September, I am amazed at the amount of mosquitos in our area, despite the fact that the city has a mosquito management program. The anti-itch lotion is great for putting on bug bites. It’s also great in case the kids happen to get into poison ivy!
When you have children, it’s a good idea to have medicine available for diarrhea and stomach aches. Such medications can help when your child gets sick! for some reason, the hot weather always seems to make stomach aches worse.
Syrup of Ipecac
It’s always a good idea to have this on hand in case your child ingests something he shouldn’t have ingested. Before you administer the medication to your child, be sure to call your poison control center to check first.
In order to be prepared, I have the phone number of the poison control center on a magnet attached to the inside of the medicine cabinet. It’s good to have the information in a readily accessible place.
This ointment is great to keep on hand, especially if your child likes to scratch. I can’t tell you the number of times my youngest scratched her mosquito bites and ended up with a skin infection! During the summer, it’s easy for scratches to also get infected. After cleaning a bite, scratch or scrape, you may want to put some ointment on the skin just to make sure that the area doesn’t get infected.
In our medicine cabinet, I keep supplies like nail clippers, tweezers, ace bandages, and a thermometer.
The ace bandages are good for wrapping sprained ankles and wrists. The tweezers are great for getting splinters out of fingers and feet! It seems that we are always losing the nail clippers and tweezers. For that reason, I like to purchase several at one time.
Keeping a well stocked medicine cabinet is not only smart, but it’s a great way to keep your kids safe this summer!