No matter how careful we are or how much we emphasize injury prevention, minor health problems are almost inevitable. This is why everyone should have a well stocked medicine cabinet, just in case trouble arises. Whether you’re treating a bump or scratch your child got while playing, or nursing someone back to health, making sure you have the right products on hand can help you treat the problem much faster.
If it’s been a while since you checked the old medicine cabinet, you’re probably due for an inspection. It is recommended that you do this every few months. This way you don’t risk to run out of supplies when you need them most. Below are a few tips on things to have in stock as well as how to properly store and organize your medicine cabinet.
Storage is Important
When deciding where to store basic health and medical supplies for your family, be sure that you don’t place it in locations that are prone to moisture or heat. In some cases, the wrong temperature can cause medications to lose their potency or even worse … become toxic. The best place to store your necessities would be in a linen or bedroom closet where temperatures tend to remain the same all year long. More, it’s also important for some drugs to be deposited away from natural or artificial light.
What to Get
There are so many different products out there on the market that you’ll go bankrupt trying to afford everything. While you can never be too prepared for an unexpected accident, illness, or discomfort, going overboard might cause you to lose money on products you’ll never use. To get you started here are a few must-haves for your family medicine cabinet:
• Antibiotic Ointment – When you have children you especially need to be able to treat their scrapes and cuts so they don’t end up getting infected. Antibiotic ointment helps to keep the cut clean while also soothing pain.
• Alcohol Wipes – Alcohol wipes can be used to remove bacteria from open scrapes and for cleaning tools like thermometers and medicine caps. Keeping wipes on hand is a lot easier to deal with than a bottle and cotton as you don’t have to worry about spilling it.
• Anti-Itch Cream – Mosquito bites, minor rashes, and skin irritations can cause you to scratch a lot. Topical cortisone cream will provide soothing relief as the rash or bite clears up.
• Hemorrhoid products – Specialized creams and oils such as hemorrhoid products can come in handy when you least expect it. As hemorrhoids can be brought on for a number of reasons, but are typically not severe, having over the counter hemorrhoid products can provide instant relief from the pain and discomfort.
• Thermometer – This one is pretty self explanatory as you need to be able to take accurate temperatures to determine whether you need to get to the doctor or if you can treat the fever at home.
• Painkillers – There is nothing worse than having a headache with no form of relief in sight. Painkillers that include ibuprofen or acetaminophen can relieve pain without having to run to the doctor.
• Allergy Medication – If you have allergy sufferers in your home, investing in an over-the-counter allergy medicine is ideal. Even if you have a prescription from your doctor, having a backup plan for days where allergens are high can help provide immediate relief.
• Cold and cough medicine – You never know when the cold or flu might make its way into your home. The best way to be prepared is to have over-the-counter medication safe for adults and children to take. It can easily relieve cold and flu symptoms allowing you to get sleep and heal.
• Bandages – Of course if you’re going to treat a cut or scrape you’re going to need to cover it with some bandages. Having varying size band aids is ideal to cover wounds completely.
Keeping it Organized
Now that you know what to get, you need to know how you’re going to store all of these things. If you’re fortunate enough to have a linen closet, then you can store things on the top two shelves. Remember, it is important to keep medication and other chemicals away from children so storing it in high places is best. If you don’t have a linen closet or medicine cabinet, you can create your own or get creative with the storage. Invest in a clear tote or box and store all of your supplies in there.
You can never be too sure when your loved ones could get injured or fall ill. While going to the doctor for serious issues is recommended, when dealing with common issues like scrapes, cuts, allergies, hemorrhoids, and headaches you can treat yourself at home. Be sure to invest in all of the above recommended health and medical supplies and store them in a safe place.