How to Make a Natural-ish First-Aid Kit

Kids practicing with first-aid supplies.
Kids using first-aid materials. Photo by: Janko Ferlic.

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It’s time to start thinking about your First-Aid kit.

It’s the time of year when people start thinking about playgrounds, parks, hiking, and all. the. adventures. Which also means it’s time to re-stock the first aid kit. Don’t have one? That’s okay, If you’re here, you’re ahead of the game. Sure, you could totally rely on the place you’re visiting having a kit available, but I’ve been horrified intrigued by the lack of knowledge most staff actually possess at these venues designed for kids.

When it comes to health stuff, it’s good to be prepared. It’s also ambitious to keep a kit as natural as possible because all pharmaceuticals have side effects. But sometimes, using Benadryl or Dramamine is just downright necessary.

Alright – so what does one pack when making a First-Aid kit that’s as natural as possible? This list is a comprehensive list of everything to keep on hand, regardless of the kit location. Let’s get to it!

Before moving on: If administering First-Aid isn’t something you’re entirely comfortable with, I encourage you to take an online First-Aid course. It’s nominal money for the confidence to triage your family members accurately.

The Container

A good container is half the battle, and this container fits the bill. The top has separated compartments and the bottom two are just open trays. They’re easy to take apart and clean which is a huge win! Keeping two kits – one for home and one for the road – is a great idea, lest you have to run to the car each time you have an accident. Curate each kit to the type of accidents/injuries you would normally encounter in a given place. For example, you probably don’t need burn ointment when you go to the playground. For the sake of this blog, everything is compiled so you can pick and choose what you need. Maybe you do need burn ointment when you go to your local playground.

First Aid for Cuts & Wounds

Sterile Saline Wound Wash

Most times you need First-Aid, you’re not near a sink to wash out the affected area. Sterile saline under pressure solves this problem. Just point and spray.

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Band-Aids really aren’t necessary all that often. Wounds need air to heal. But if you’re out on a playground or somewhere where that open wound might get exposed to something icky.. slapping a Band-Aid on it is more than appropriate. There are all sorts of fun ones out there, but I prefer the Bravery Badges because they’re flexible and fun enough.

Gauze Rolls

Guaze rolls are a staple for the times that things are a little more serious/sore than a Band-Aid can handle but still don’t warrant a visit to urgent care. They’re great for active bleeding when you just need to move on with your life.

Self-Adhesive First Aid Tape

To go over the gauze. Keeps it in place and protects it from filth. Fun colors get kids focused on making decisions, which helps them feel in control of their care.

Micromend Emergency Laceration Closures

These are a bit of an investment but completely worth it. I once used these then buzzed over to urgent care just to ensure I didn’t need stitches. The attending physician was super impressed with how well they performed and sent me on my way.


Sometimes you need a Band-Aid. Sometimes you need microMend and sometimes you really need something in-between. These are better than microMend for little kids as there are no metal prongs pulling the wound together. The best way to use these is like a butterfly bandage.

Healing Ointment

Wounds need to heal. They don’t need to be exposed to crap that can be contaminated with PAHs. Similarly, there is literally no reason to increase antibiotic exposure where you don’t have to. Opt for a salve that has ingredients like Calendula (soothing) and Echinacea (antibacterial properties).

Blister Band-Aids

Blisters suck. Be prepared. ”Nuff said.

Tick Twisters

The longer the tick is embedded, the more likely they are to transmit disease. By keeping a tick twister in your First-Aid kit, you’ll always be prepared to deal with these nasty little boogers immediately.


Sometimes kids get splinters and it’s just hanging right there out of the skin. Why not pull it before it gets embedded?


For the splinters. Don’t do this at the playground but have one available in the kit for when the time is right.

First-Aid PPE

Most times you’re probably going to be working with your own family, so keeping a lot of PPE (personal protective equipment) on hand isn’t necessary. What is listed here is more for the “patient’s” protection so your own natural skin microbiome doesn’t give them an infection.

Antibacterial hand wipes OR Hand Sanitizer

Good for all things. 65% IPA with aloe, so you can clean a wound or little hands after a visit to a place that feels more like a Petri dish than a fun day out.


These gloves are nitrile (read: no latex) and are comfortable enough to wear for long durations. They certainly aren’t as comfortable as sterile gloves, but they get the job done. Medium fits an average-sized human (5’6 / average BMI).

First Aid for Bumps, Bruises & Bites

Instant Cold Packs

The math for these is the same as litter box math: Cold packs needed = # of kids + 1

Benadryl Cream

There are hills to die on. Dealing with miserable itchiness while out and about is not one of them. Keep Benadryl cream on hand because being a hippie is sort of the opposite of being a martyr. You can still be a hippie and appreciate the instantaneous relief of Benadryl cream.


Great for skin irritations including minor burns. Also can be great for anything that’s itchy.

Arnicare Gel

You are not a proper hippie if you have not heard of and/or used Arnica in your journey. Sorry. But you’re joining the club now. Better late than never. This stuff is so amazing, Place it on that egg that is developing on your kiddo’s noggin and it will be gone by morning. Miraculous.

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Sometimes you can’t use the gel (like on an open wound), but still need to control swelling and/or bruising. In those cases, dole out a few arnica pellets, instead.

First Aid for Pain Management


Don’t let a headache or back pain ruin a day out with your family. Keep individual packs of Advil on hand for times when natural remedies just aren’t cutting it. I choose Ibuprofen over acetaminophen (Tylenol) due to the liver warnings and because Ibuprofen controls swelling, whereas acetaminophen just masks pain.

Junior Strength Advil

Same as above, but for kids. Steer clear of Tylenol when you can help it, due to liver issues. Keep an anti-inflammatory on hand for each age kiddo in your care.

Camilia Liquid

Teething kiddo? Keep Boiron’s homeopathic liquid on hand.

First Aid for Motion Sickness

Genexa Kids Tummy Relief

Genexa is a new kid on the block in OTCs. They offer a clean OTC product line, as well as homeopathic. Their tummy relief is a great first line-defense for all tummy issues.

Acupressure Bands

These are great for kiddos (and adults), who have tummy issues in the car. There’s nothing like having a fun day out ruined before you even arrive. Just slip them on with fun little bracelets BEFORE the motion begins.

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Dramamine for Kids

If it’s a long drive, or the abovementioned measures aren’t working, Drammamine for kids is a reasonable next step. Bonus because these can be used on anyone 2 and up!


Having a First-Aid kit isn’t just for the kids. If any adult or teen in your family suffers from motion sickness, make sure to keep the appropriate dose Dramamine on hand for them, too. You can’t be a present parent when the ride to Funville has you feeling like the night you realized why Joe Nichols wrote an entire song about Tequila.


Every family is different, so your extras could and should look different than mine. My kids suffer from hangnails (magnesium deficiency), so I keep a pair of nail clippers in my box, with a plethora of different essential oils. At the end of the day, you know your family’s needs best. If you don’t live in a tick-prone area, you probably don’t need a tick twister, but maybe every family outing begins and ends with someone feeling queasy (been there, done that). Preparation is key and keeping it organized is half the battle. With this handy list and plenty of ideas, you’re well on your way to handling your next accident with confidence.

Let the adventuring begin!

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