While participating in sports is vital for improving general wellbeing, they test the limit of one’s physical abilities. Some circumstances lead to injury, unfortunately. However, with a well-packed first aid kit, you can handle any emergency before seeking help from a medical professional to receive appropriate treatment and care.
But what are the essentials of a sports first aid kit? Different first aid kits are stuffed with different essentials depending on the sporting activities an individual participates in. There are also some guidelines to pack a first aid kit to ensure everything is safe and in good condition.
When packing your sports first aid kit, consider the following:
- The kind of sport: The essentials to get in your first aid varies with the type of sport. For instance, the most common injuries in team sports are abrasions, bruises, and sprained ankles. So, your kit should contain items suitable for such injuries.
For racket sports, blisters are common. Therefore, blister plasters are vital when participating in a racket sport. For track and field sports like cross country running, meanwhile, have supplies to treat strained muscles, blisters, and sprains.
If you need to stock up on your first aid essentials, you might need to order some from SAM Collections and other companies.
- Stock enough quantity: You should be prepared to treat more than one person in a sporting event. Hence, carry enough supplies that can cater to a large group.
- Ensure ready access: First aid supplies should be easily accessible and should be clearly labeled for easy identification.
- Protect against damage: First aid essentials should be carried in a waterproof container that can withstand extreme temperature changes.
Packing A Sports First Aid Kit: What Items Should You Include
Now, you’re ready to curate different items to include in your sports first aid kit. Each first aid item is necessary for properly administering timely care to sports-related injuries. Some of them are:
- Instant Ice Pack
Ice packs are vital when reducing swelling after a sprain, strain, insect bites, or inflamed body part. They also reduce pain and minimize the damage done to the surrounding cells. Ensure to include some instant ice packs in your sports first aid kit since they don’t require refrigeration or freezing.
Bandages are essential and should never be left out when stocking your supplies. They generally come in three types; conforming, crepe, and triangular.
A conforming bandage is a lightweight, stretchy bandage that helps provide light support to wrists and ankles or can be used to wrap and hold wound dressings. Meanwhile, crepe bandages are designed from ‘Z’ and ‘S’ twist yarns, making them super flexible. They’re mainly used to support painful muscle strains or bandage a dressed wound.
Lastly, a triangular bandage is highly adaptable and is used in a wide range of circumstances to support wounds and injuries. For instance, it can be used as an arm sling or a pad to regulate bleeding.
- Adhesive Wound Dressing
This is a sterile pad or compress used on a wound to facilitate healing and protect the wound from further harm. The adhesive wound dressing is more convenient for large wounds that a plaster can’t cover. The adhesive edge means that the dressing doesn’t need a bandage to hold it in place, making dressing easier.
- Disposable Gloves
When treating an injury, as a first aid respondent, you may get into contact with blood. Avoiding any fluid contact with the injured person is crucial to prevent potential infection.
Before you administer any treatment, you must put on a pair of disposable gloves to keep you protected. Thus, when stocking your first aid kit, ensure to include at least a dozen disposable gloves as you’ll have to use a different pair for every patient.
- Clinical Waste Bag
This bag is a must-have to safely dispose of body fluids and objects contaminated by them. This bag is crucial, especially when cleaning and dressing a wound. It helps maintain a safe and clean environment.
- Eye And Wound Wash
This is a sterile solution that helps clean out cuts and wounds and safely dress them by reducing the chances of infection. It can also be used to wash your eyes if they’re contaminated by elements. Performing an eye wash should be done as quickly as possible to alleviate serious eye injury. Eye and wound wash should be made from a saline solution that resembles the body’s natural fluids that don’t irritate when absorbed.
- Petroleum Jelly
Petroleum jelly is probably the most commonly used product in sports first aid. Also known as petrolatum, it’s manufactured with oils and waxes which form a semisolid substance. It has many uses, like moisturizing and soothing the skin and creating a waterproof protective barrier to wounds. Boxers also apply it to make their face slippery and deflect the opponent’s blows better.
This guide has put together the essentials for a sports first aid kit. Nevertheless, other items such as plasters, microporous tape, sutures, scissors, tweezers, alcohol wipes, safety pins, glucose chews, foil blanket, and freeze spray should be included in a sports first aid. Remember, it’s vital to pack your first aid kit based on the type of sporting events you’re engaging in.