Update Your First-Aid Kit

First-aid kits can make the difference between life and death, or at least alleviate discomfort, but owning one is just the first step.

It is important to make an effort to maintain your first-aid kit by making sure the items are up to date.

It is easy to buy a well-equipped first-aid kit on Taobao or at a pharmacy for 30 RMB and up. It usually contains the basics for cuts and small injuries, with personal protective equipment and small medical instruments. More luxurious ones provide surgical or N95 masks to reduce the possibility of airborne pathogens, which is valuable during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Medication is a major part of a first-aid kit. If you do not want to go to a drug store for your supplies, you can order directly from the Ali Heath Pharmacy on Taobao. Tylenol (泰诺, tài nuò) for adults and infants, calamine lotion (炉甘石, lú gān shí), eye drops (眼药水, yǎn yào shuǐ), anti-acids (胃 药, wèi yào), disinfectant (消毒剂, xiāo dú jì) and vitamins (维生素, wéi shēng sù) are the most obvious and frequently used items.

As the summer begins, I recommend adding Mopidick无比滴 to your kit. (Yes, you read that right.) In a mosquito heaven like Dongguan, the lotion brings instant relief.

It is also useful for other skin irritants, such as rashes or sunburn. Without Mopidick on hand, you will be mopey at heart. It is sold in a Hong Kong or Japanese import stores.

Another recommended addition is saline solution tubes. The tubes are used to clean an open wound, rinse a stuffed nose or in a nebulizer to relieve a cough. If it is in the budget, get a nebulizer too, in case any of your family members have bronchitis or pneumonia (not caused by COVID-19). It can save you so much time and trouble trying to get to the hospital every day for treatment.

For seniors or those on daily medication, it is better to upgrade your first-aid kit into a medical-care kit. A smart medicine box is an excellent supplement. The cheaper kinds, with a digital alarm, cost around 50 RMB and a pill cutter is often included. If you are willing to invest more money, you can get a smart box that sends a reminder to your WeChat.

If you have not used anything from the kit, set a reminder on your calendar (monthly or quarterly) to manage and check nothing has expired and sterile products are still sealed. Take this as an opportunity to educate your family members about how to use the first-aid kit. It is fun to put those pills, bandages, cotton wool and other contents in order.