When my little one fell over this week and took some skin off, I headed straight to the medicine cupboard. Naturally.
Not that long ago, I sent some time sorting and organizing this cupboard, so feeling rather confident, I told my son, ‘don’t worry, Mommy has just the thing for that!’.
But I didn’t.
Oh my, how long has it been since I delved into this cupboard*? My antiseptic cream was out of date, and runny. Yes, I did consider using said cream, until it oozed out of the tube perfectly separated. I then went for the band aids. Band aids don’t have an expiry date, right? Of course not, but an empty box of band aids is not going to help either. Argh!
So I attended to the wound with magic Mommy attention and kisses, then promptly made a list of essentials to stock up on:
- Pain relief for adults; paracetamol, aspirin, Tylenol
- Pain relief medicine for children; Panadol, Nurofen
- Band aids
- Antiseptic cream
- Saline solution
What other essentials would you add to this list?
I’m keen to hear equivalent essentials from our US and UK friends!
* Umm, I threw out things with 2010 expiry dates…
6 thoughts on “Fives Must-Haves For Your Medicine Cabinet”
I always keep butterfly band aids. They are great to hold something together until you can get needed stitches (except maybe head wounds in the hair area).
I like to keep a bottle of liquid bandaid and a tube of icthamol for splinters and infections. One night and they’re both usually gone.
Antihistamine, like Benadryl, for bee sting or food allergic reactions–to be taken emergently before going to the hospital. Ipecac syrup if you have children that may ingest poison accidentally. Antacids. You may need them after emergencies. LOL!
I received a lovely email from Jo, who listed the following must-haves. Thank you Jo.
From a physician
things I’ve found most useful for my children and household along with tips for proper use
For a minor wound, there is nothing more important than soap and water (o.k. and a hug and kiss for a child).
1. Petroleum jelly, generic (brand name Vaseline)–good for just about any skin surface (i.e. not deep) scratch or itch or bruise or irritation, much better than creams for moderate to very dry skin
Every time my kids get a little “boo-boo,” they know what I’ll recommend–“Go wash with soap and water and put on a little Vaseline.” By the way, I’d use antiseptic cream sparingly. Some people are even allergic to it.
2. Pain relief for adults–acetaminophen, generic (brand name Paracetamol or Tylenol depending where you live) and naproxen or aspirin for muscle aches or cramps or headache.
Never overuse pain killers–even over the counter medicines can be harmful if not used correctly
3. Pain relief for children–depending on age, liquid or chewable or capsules of acetaminophen (Paracetamol or Tylenol). Always make sure no other ingredient mixed in, such as in cough or cold preparations. Make sure it’s the pure thing.
Be very careful with dosing. It is based on weight, but if you are not sure, it is always better to call your physician’s office to check if you are doing it right.
5. A few rolls of long gauze to wrap areas where a Band-Aid won’t work, like joints and hands, etc. or for larger scrapes (I haven’t had much luck with band-aids in children–inevitably they come off or are removed in less than 5 minutes! :>)
6. Over the counter clotrimazole cream or similar antifungal to treat athlete’s foot
7. A tweezers with a finer point to help with splinter removal
8. Saline nasal spray–good for stuffy noses
9. plain guaifenesin (Robitussin syrup or Mucous relief tablets, probably other brand names depending on your country of residence) over the counter strength, and no other ingredients mixed in. This is good for cough with mucous coming from lower airways (not just nasal mucous dripping down your throat)
10. Cough drops (Halls and many other brand name, with menthol for a very bothersome cough not requiring doctor’s attention)–for nagging cough and ticklish throat that interferes with sleep or is annoying during the day. I like sugar free for night time use.
11. Antiacid tablets or liquid (sugar free for at night) for occasional heartburn or acid stomach
By the way, most of a pharmacy’s stock of over-the-counter cough and cold medicines are not helpful, and can be harmful as well, especially in children and the elderly.
My group suggests ten essential items need to be in your medicine cabinet:
Thermometer which allows you to check the severity of a fever
Calibrated Measuring Spoon or Calibrated Measuring Cup to administer the correct dose of medicine
Dental Floss to keep your teeth flossed daily and after each meal
Fungal Medicine can be used to treat athlete’s foot at home with nonprescription fungal medicines i.e. like cream, spray, gel and powders
Sterile Gauze and Medical Tape for injuries that require something bigger than adhesive bandage
Tweezers to keep you well groomed
Muscle Cream to help ease pain of exercise and muscle strains
Antiseptic to disinfect minor wounds
Nail Clippers for nail maintenance for healthy nails free from infection
Adhesive Bandages of variety of shapes and sizes kept in your medicine chest
My five must-haves for any medicine cabinet are lavender, lemon, peppermint, melaleuca, & frankincense essential oils. I find eo’s to be more effective & economical. They’ve helped ease my migraines more than any prescription. Also my husband has found allergy relief. For more info http://campwander.com/2012/11/the-fragrant-pharmacy/