Going into the great outdoors is always an adventure, but there’s no denying that it can also be dangerous and leaving the house properly prepared is extremely important. While we hope to never use any of the items in our medical kits, having them there, at the ready, can mean the difference between a wound healing quickly, or becoming painfully infected.
Falls, burns, cuts, insect bites, and sometimes a broken bone are all risks while hiking but packing these items will ensure that any hiker will be able to get home safe.
Most experienced hikers will have some way of cooking their food, which usually means having a gas stove or fire going. Gas stoves are notorious for burns, especially when there’s a hot pot of boiling water sitting precariously on the edge of the stove top. Burns can and will happen, and it’s important to have the right medical gear to deal with them. Normal burn salves are widely available and often cheap and are perfect for minor burns.
It’s one of the most overlooked items in a hiker’s itinerary, but sunburn is vitally important to keeping the harsh rays of the sun at bay. Sunscreen, along with wearing long shirts and pants, are good ways of preventing severe sunburn. It’s also important that a hiker limits himself to when they set out. Being in the open during the middle of the day can lead to heat exhaustion and sometimes even sunstroke, and it’s usually best to spend lunch hours sitting under some shade, possibly enjoying Aussie pokies games online before heading out again.
Insects are everywhere in the world, but they tend to be in much bigger numbers when in the wilderness. And while a few insect bites aren’t too much of a problem, getting a dozen or more mosquito bites can sometimes lead to a severe allergic reaction. Having some anti-insect spray is a good start, but something like Germolene can also be a good way to stem how severe an insect bite is.
Cuts happen all the time in the wilderness, and although they tend to be minor, it’s still a good idea to keep them clean and free from infection. Here, a few Band-Aids should do the trick, along with some Germolene.
Severe bleeding is an extreme danger that should be dealt with immediately. The best way to stop any major bleeding is with a tourniquet. Homemade tourniquets can do a decent job, but hospital-grade tourniquets are available for purchase and are worth having on hand in case of an emergency.
Fractures are among the worst accidents that can happen in nature, often because they mean that a hiker will no longer be able to cover enough ground to get to help in good time. Fractures, however, don’t usually lead to death, as long as the hiker is prepared. Having an instant cold pack, along with a splint, is usually enough to keep a leg or arm in place while also helping with any inflammation.