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The Complete Wood To Water Camping First Aid Kit Checklist

camping first aid supplies

Our complete camping first aid checklist includes everything you need to ensure your safety and well-being on your camping trips, no matter if you’re a first-time camper or a repeat adventurer.

While safety might not be the first thing you think of when planning a camping trip, it should always be a top priority. Accidents and injuries can happen anywhere, anytime, so being as prepared as you can be is key.

We’ve taken our years of camping experience to give you a checklist to run through when packing your first aid kit for your next adventure. Here are our top first-aid essentials for any camping trip.

Our essential first-aid kit checklist to help you stay safe when camping
Basic first-aid pain relief
  • Paracetamol/Ibuprofen
  • Aspirin
  • Ice packs or cooling gels/spray
Basic first-aid wound care
  • Antiseptic wipes
  • Sterile gauze pads
  • Adhesive bandages (plasters)
  • Micropore tape
  • Antibacterial cream
  • Non-adhesive dressings
  • Tweezers
  • Scissors
Basic preventative measures
  • Sunscreen
  • Insect repellent
  • Hand sanitiser
  • Rehydration salts
  • Allergy medication
Auxillary wound essentials
  • Compression bandages
  • Sterile wound dressings
  • Elastic bandages
  • Butterfly stitches (steri-strips)
  • Triangular bandages
  • Wound closure strips
Auxillary medical supplies
  • Antihistamines
  • Anti-diarrhoeal medication
  • Oral rehydration solutions
  • Antacids
  • Antifungal cream
  • Hydrocortisone cream
  • Epinephrine auto-injector (if prescribed)
  • Prescription medications
Camping first aid
The Complete Wood To Water Camping First Aid Kit Checklist

Basic First Aid Kit Essentials

Any camping trip, even a weekend getaway or a festival trip, needs a basic first aid kit to handle common ailments and injuries that may occur. 

Here are our recommendations for your basic first aid kit to keep you and your campmates healthy.

Pain Relief

Pain relief is a critical component of any basic first aid kit, especially when you’re out camping and far from medical facilities. The items focused on pain relief should include:

  • Paracetamol & ibuprofen: These over-the-counter medications are essential for reducing fever and alleviating mild to moderate pain, such as headaches, muscle aches, and menstrual cramps.
  • Aspirin: Useful not only for pain relief but also for its anti-inflammatory properties. However, it’s important to note that aspirin is not recommended for individuals under 16 years of age without medical advice.
  • Ice packs or cooling gels: These are invaluable for immediate relief of sprains, strains, and swelling. We always take the IGLOO Ice Blocks with us and pop them in our freezer box. They’re also good for keeping food cool, so they can double-up.

By including these items in your camping first aid kit, you can ensure you’re prepared to manage common pains and aches that might occur during your outdoor adventures.

Wound Care

Effective wound care is fundamental to any first aid kit aimed at camping enthusiasts. Ensuring you have the tools to clean, disinfect, and protect wounds can prevent infections and speed up the healing process. 

Our recommended items include:

  • Antiseptic wipes: For cleaning wounds before dressing. It’s essential to minimise infection risk.
  • Sterile gauze pads: To cover and protect a wound from infection. They are available in various sizes and can be cut to fit.
  • Adhesive bandages or plasters: These are available in a selection of sizes and shapes to cover and protect minor cuts and scrapes.
  • Micropore tape: For securing gauze pads in place without causing irritation to the skin.
  • Antibacterial ointment: To apply on a clean wound before dressing to reduce the risk of infection.
  • Non-adherent pads: Ideal for covering burns or abrasions, as they won’t stick to the wound.
  • Tweezers: For removing debris such as dirt, glass, or splinters from a wound.
  • Scissors: With rounded tips for cutting gauze or tape to the required size.

Preventative Measures

Preventative measures are an often overlooked but vital component of any basic first aid kit, especially for camping. Incorporating items aimed at preventing injuries can significantly enhance safety during outdoor activities. 

Key items include:

  • Sunscreen: To protect the skin from harmful UV rays, reducing the risk of sunburn and sunstroke.
  • Insect repellent: To ward off insects and prevent bites which can lead to discomfort, allergic reactions, or even diseases.
  • Hand sanitiser: For maintaining hygiene, particularly before eating or after handling items that could be contaminated. This simple preventative measure can significantly reduce the risk of gastrointestinal infections.
  • Rehydration salts: To replenish fluids and electrolytes lost through sweat, helping to prevent dehydration, which can be a serious concern when camping, especially in hot weather.
  • Allergy medication: Including antihistamines for those who suffer from allergies. This is particularly important for outdoor enthusiasts who may be exposed to allergens like pollen, dust, or insect stings.

Include these preventative measures to reduce the likelihood of common camping ailments and ensure a safer, more enjoyable outdoor adventure.

Instead of building your own first aid kit, the Kombat UK Small First Aid Kit and the Highlander Forces Cadet First Aid Kit are both great options for ready-stocked kits.

Auxillary First Aid Kit Equipment

In addition to your basic first-aid kit, you should include some heavy-duty first-aid essentials. These pieces of equipment should be considered essentials for off-grid trips that are far from medical attention.

Open Wound Essentials

In the case of more significant injuries, especially those involving open wounds, your camping first aid kit should be equipped with additional items aimed at managing these situations effectively. 

Being prepared for severe cuts, lacerations, or deep wounds is crucial when you’re in remote areas. Here’s what to include:

  • Compression bandages: These are vital for applying pressure to larger wounds or controlling bleeding before professional medical help can be accessed. They can also be used to support sprains or strains.
  • Sterile wound dressings: Larger than standard gauze pads, these dressings are designed for bigger wounds and provide a sterile barrier against infection.
  • Elastic bandages: For wrapping around sprains and strains, elastic bandages offer support and reduce movement, aiding in the healing process.
  • Butterfly stitches (steri-strips): For closing small to moderate lacerations that don’t require professional suturing. They help to keep the wound edges together, promoting better healing.
  • Triangular bandages: Versatile and essential, these can be used as slings, for immobilisation, or to wrap around wounds as makeshift dressings.
  • Wound closure strips: Similar to butterfly stitches, these adhesive strips are used to close wounds and support optimal healing.

Medical First Aid Supplies

An extensive camping first aid kit should also include medications to manage a range of possible health issues that can occur in the wilderness.

  • Antihistamines: Essential for allergic reactions, including hay fever, insect bites, or unexpected allergies to plants. They can help reduce itching, swelling, and other allergic reaction symptoms.
  • Anti-diarrhoeal medication: This includes substances like loperamide. Given that changes in water and food can lead to gastrointestinal issues, anti-diarrheal medication can quickly address symptoms of diarrhoea.
  • Oral rehydration solutions: Critical for treating dehydration, which can result from diarrhoea, vomiting, or excessive sweating. These solutions help replenish lost fluids and salts.
  • Antacids: Useful for managing discomfort from heartburn or indigestion that can arise from campfire meals or unfamiliar foods.
  • Antifungal creams: For treating fungal infections, which are more common in damp environments, including athlete’s foot or ringworm.
  • Hydrocortisone cream: A 1% hydrocortisone cream can relieve skin irritations, rashes, insect bites, and minor skin inflammations, reducing discomfort.
  • Epinephrine auto-injector (if prescribed): For those with severe allergies, an Epinephrine auto-injector like an EpiPen can be life-saving in the event of anaphylactic reactions.
  • Prescription medications: If anyone in your camping group is on prescription medication, ensure a sufficient supply for the trip, plus a little extra in case of delays.
Camping first aid kit
The Complete Wood To Water Camping First Aid Kit Checklist

Must-Have First Aid Tools

For a well-prepared camping expedition, there are several first aid tools that are indispensable, and we always make sure to take on our own camping trips:

  • Safety pins: These are useful for securing bandages and slings in place. They can also come in handy for repairing gear in a pinch.
  • First aid manual: A compact, waterproof first aid manual can provide a quick reference for treating injuries and conditions when professional medical help is not immediately available.
  • Medical gloves: Disposable gloves are essential for protecting both the first aider and the patient from potential infection during wound care or any other direct contact.
  • Thermometer: A digital thermometer can help you monitor for fever, an important symptom of infection or illness.
  • Whistle: While not a medical tool per se, a whistle is a vital safety tool for signalling for help if you or someone in your group is injured and unable to return to camp.
  • Waterproof case or bag: Keeping your first aid supplies dry is essential, particularly in damp or rainy environments. A sturdy waterproof case or bag can protect your items from water damage.

Survival Kit Essential Items

A survival kit extends beyond medical emergencies, incorporating tools for shelter, sustenance, and safety.

Key items not found in a first aid kit include a fire starter (matches, lighter, or magnesium fire starter) for warmth and cooking, an emergency blanket to retain body heat, a multi-tool or knife for various tasks, water purification tablets to ensure safe drinking water, a compass for navigation, and non-perishable emergency food rations.

These items are crucial for survival in scenarios where you’re waiting for rescue or need to move to safety.

For the ultimate ready-made survival kit, the BCB Elite Explorer’s Kit is our favourite choice. It contains everything you need to treat minor injuries and survive away from your camp.

The BCB Ultimate Survival Kit is another comprehensive survival kit that can keep you going in adverse situations. It includes first aid tools and survival tools.

To find out more about what to include in a survival kit, read our blog about Survival Kit Essentials.

Final Thoughts: First Aid Kit Supplies for a Safe Camping Trip

Equipping yourself with a comprehensive first aid kit is crucial for any camping adventure. It ensures preparedness for both minor inconveniences and serious emergencies.

Always keep your first aid kit fully stocked between adventures so it’s ready to go when you need it. Refer to this checklist to properly restock your kit.

We have a super range of first aid kits for camping that contain a variety of essential supplies. Whether you’re a solo camper or heading out with a group, we have the perfect kit to fit your needs. You can never be over-prepared, after all!

FAQs

Do I Need First Aid Training to Administer First Aid?

While not mandatory, a basic first aid course is highly recommended. It equips you with essential skills to effectively respond to common injuries and emergencies, potentially saving lives until professional medical help is available.

What First Aid Technique Should Be Used in Camping?

For common camping injuries, prioritise cleaning the wound with clean water, applying an antibacterial ointment, and covering it with a sterile dressing. For sprains, use the RICE method (Rest, Ice, Compression, Elevation). Always seek professional medical help for severe injuries.

What Are the 4 C’s of First Aid?

The 4 C’s of First Aid stand for Calm, Control, Comfort, and Call for help. They guide the initial response in an emergency: stay Calm, Control the situation, Comfort the injured person, and Call for professional medical help if the situation is beyond first aid treatment.

What Does ABCD Stand For in First Aid?

In first aid, ABCD stands for Airway, Breathing, Circulation, and Disability. Responders use this sequence of priorities to assess and manage a patient, ensuring that critical life-supporting functions are maintained and any immediate threats to life are addressed.

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