First Aid Camping Tips

Written by Carin Mangimeli

When warm weather approaches, millions of Americans flock to enjoy the great outdoors. Hiking, biking, walking and camping are just a few of the many activities pursued during the summer months. However, due to these activities, as well as the increased actions of people during these months, it is the time of the year when one is at the greatest risk for injury.

Camping can be particularly hazardous, as campers are frequently far from civilization and from hospitals and emergency care. Camping is also done in the wilderness, which is considered the “unknown” for many, and contains many elements that can harm an unsuspecting camper. So the next time you embark on a camping trip, whether it’s your first or your hundredth, make sure you bring the following first aid items:

  • Extra batteries and bulb for your flashlight;
  • An emergency whistle in case you are stranded;
  • A full water bottle that remains full throughout the trip;
  • A waterproof container with waterproof matches;
  • A waterproof container or first aid that includes:
  • Sterilized gauze for wrapping a wound,
  • Sterilized gauze pads for compression/bleeding,
  • Bandage tape,
  • Scissors (or a pocketknife),
  • CPR mouth barrier (found at your local camping store),
  • Antiseptic,
  • Antibiotic cream or ointment,
  • Itch-relief cream (for bug bites and poison ivy),
  • Lots of Band-Aids,
  • Elastic bandages suitable for a sling or wrapping an injured limb,
  • An instant ice/hot pack,
  • Pain reliever (aspirin, ibuprofen, etc.);
  • A blanket (space blankets are compact and conserve warmth),
  • Tweezers,
  • First aid instruction booklet (treatments for common ailments/injuries),
  • List of medications taken by the campers,
  • List of allergies/health concerns of all campers,
  • Emergency contacts and phone numbers for all campers.

This list will vary depending on the individual needs of the camper and the number of campers, but no camper should be without a basic first aid kit. It can save your life or someone else’s one day.

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Carin Mangimeli