It’s that time of year when I run around getting ready for our annual summer holiday – I generally like to have cleaned and cleared out the fridge, vacuumed the house, arranged a food delivery for the day of our return… oh and packed for 5 people. I also end up gathering together the essential tea towels, dishwasher tabs, washing capsules (because with 3 children, there’s no way I can survive 2 weeks without doing a good deal of laundry!) and all other assortment of extremely useful items.
I usually give some thought to my First Aid travel essentials because the general rule is, if you take it, you probably won’t need it. Here are my top tips for travel First Aid kits for children:
1. Always take paracetamol and ibuprofen (Calpol and Nurofen) – they are great for bringing down fevers and for pain relief. Take spare syringes, and if I am flying, I put a couple of sachets of Calpol into my hand luggage.
2. A thermometer – a simple, digital underarm thermometer is perfect – you just don’t want to be second guessing if they really have a fever or not.
3. Rehydration sachets (dioralyte) – perfect if little ones (or bigger ones) have a stomach bug and can’t keep anything else down – you can use the syringes to get fluid into little ones if they are refusing to drink it!
4. Plasters – preferably with a cartoon character on them – great for making tears instantly disappear! I also put in a tube of antiseptic cream, such as Savlon or similar.
5. Gauze – a few packets of gauze to help wash wounds is a good idea – it doesn’t stick to the wound so really useful in case of a bad cut. I know lots of First Aid kits contain bandages but I never take any – if a wound is bad enough to need a bandage, it needs to be seen by a health professional, who will give you one anyway!
6. Anti histamines (Piriton) – liquid preparation, but I also take anti histamine cream – essential for any allergies and the cream is soothing for those nasty mosquito bites.
7. Tweezers – good for removing stings and splinters.
Absolutely essential is good travel insurance if you are leaving the UK, and I always take our EHIC cards within the EU (got to use them while we can!). If any of your children have any existing medical problems, it’s also a good idea to take hospital letters with you, including a list of any medication plus doses that they are on, just in case. Obviously, if you are travelling anywhere more exotic, please check well in advance if you need anything special to travel, such as anti malarials or extra immunisations – the NHS has a useful page on this: https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/travel-vaccinations/
I know this sounds a lot, but it really takes up far less space than that extra pair of shoes I always sneak in at the last minute! Happy travels!