What are the most important components in a first aid kit?

Dr. Ordway discusses the most important parts of a first aid kit. Click play to watch the video or read the transcript.


There are some items that all first aid kits should include, according to the American Red Cross (ARC). The items that the ARC recommends include:

  • Absorbent compress dressings
  • Adhesive bandages
  • Adhesive cloth tape
  • Antibiotic ointment
  • Antiseptic wipes
  • Aspirin
  • Blanket
  • Cold compress
  • Nonlatex gloves
  • Hydrocortisone ointment
  • Scissors
  • Roll bandage
  • Sterile gauze pads
  • Oral thermometer (non-mercury/non-glass)
  • Tweezers

It’s also important to include any important family-specific medications you might need, emergency phone numbers, including health care providers, according to the ARC.

Talk to your doctor for more information about what to include in a first aid kit.

Learn more: