First Aid Kit for Travelers

Topic Overview

What you pack in your first aid kit will depend on where and how long you plan to travel and the medical care available there. Here is a general list of items to include.

  • Insect repellent
  • Sunscreen (SPF 30 to 50) and lip screen
  • Thermometer
  • Oral rehydration solution packets
  • Basic first aid items (adhesive bandages, gauze, elastic bandage, antiseptic, tweezers)
  • Antibacterial hand wipes
  • Moleskin for blisters
  • Extra pair of prescription glasses or contacts

Talk to your doctor about which of the following medications to include and how to take them:

  • Antibiotic for self-treatment of moderate to severe diarrhea
  • Antihistamine, decongestant, and cough suppressant, alone or in combination
  • Motion sickness medication
  • Acetaminophen (such as Tylenol), aspirin, ibuprofen, or other medication for pain or fever
  • Antidiarrheal medication, such as bismuth subsalicylate (Pepto-Bismol)
  • Mild laxative
  • Antacid
  • Antifungal ointment
  • Antibacterial ointment
  • 1% hydrocortisone cream

Other items that may be useful in certain circumstances:

  • Mild sedative
  • Antianxiety medication
  • High-altitude sickness preventive medication
  • Water purification tablets or water filtering system

Related Information

Credits

Author Monica Rhodes
Editor Maria Essig
Associate Editor Pat Truman, MATC
Primary Medical Reviewer William M. Green, MD - Emergency Medicine
Specialist Medical Reviewer W. David Colby IV, MSc, MD, FRCPC - Infectious Disease
Last Updated April 14, 2009

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