The anatomy of a first-aid kit: 31 items you should always include.

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No matter where you live or who lives with you, every home should have a first-aid kit. Because no matter what type of injuries or emergencies you might experience, from bruises to burns, allergic reactions to accidents, being prepared could help make all the difference.

How to make a first-aid kit. A first-aid kit doesn’t have to be comparable to a medical bag or a hospital cart. Some come pre-assembled and others you can create yourself. Find the kit that will work best in your home, and then make sure you keep it up to date.

Where to keep a first-aid kit. Think plastic containers or tote bags, or even bathroom drawers or kitchen cupboards. Just make sure your first-aid kit is out of reach of children, but easily accessible to adults.

What to keep in your first-aid kit.

  • Adhesive bandages (assorted sizes)
  • Adhesive tape
  • Aluminum finger splint
  • Antibiotic ointment
  • Antihistamine
  • Antiseptic wipe packets
  • Aspirin
  • Batteries
  • Blanket
  • Breathing barrier (with one-way valve)
  • Calamine lotion
  • Cotton balls and cotton-tipped swabs
  • Duct tape
  • Elastic bandage
  • Eye shield or pad
  • Eyewash solution
  • Flashlight
  • Gauze pads (assorted sizes)
  • Hydrocortisone cream
  • Instant cold compress
  • Non-latex gloves
  • Petroleum jelly
  • Plastic bags (assorted sizes)
  • Safety pins (assorted sizes)
  • Scissors
  • Soap or hand sanitizer
  • Syringe, medicine cup or spoon
  • Thermometer
  • Triangular bandage
  • Tweezers
  • Waterproof matches

There’s no doubt about it. Having a first-aid kit that’s fully stocked and readily available can help you respond to almost any situation quickly and efficiently.

After you’ve put your home kit together, make sure your car is stocked, too. Get ready for the road with these 14 things you should keep in your car.