As someone who regularly works with medical supplies, I often get asked about which ones are the most important to keep in the home. While it depends on each household’s needs, there are some basics that everyone should have on hand, just in case. 

Here’s a quick rundown of the vital medical supplies you should make sure to keep in your home at all times:

1. First Aid Kit

This is an absolute must-have. A good first aid kit should be stocked with everything you need to treat minor injuries and ailments, including bandages, gauze, antiseptic wipes and ointment, pain relievers, and more.

Assorted sizes of bandages are essential for treating cuts, scrapes and other minor wounds. Be sure to include both adhesive and non-adhesive options in your first aid kit. While antiseptic wipes or sprays can be used to cleanse wounds and prevent infection.

2. EpiPen

If anyone in your household has a severe allergy (such as to peanuts or bee stings), you must have an EpiPen on hand. This device can quickly deliver a life-saving dose of epinephrine in the event of anaphylactic shock, so it’s well worth having one even if you hope you never have to use it.

3. Prescription Medications

If anyone in your household takes regular prescription medication, make sure you have a good supply on hand at all times. This is especially important if you live in an area that is prone to hurricanes or other natural disasters, as pharmacies may not be able to fill prescriptions during and immediately after these events.

4. Over-The-Counter Medications

In addition to prescription medications, there are a few over-the-counter medications that every household should have on hand. These include pain relievers like ibuprofen and acetaminophen, antihistamines for allergies, and antacids for an upset stomach.

5. Thermometer

A good digital thermometer is essential for quickly and accurately checking someone’s temperature. This can help diagnose everything from the common cold to more serious illnesses like influenza.

6. Blood Pressure Monitor

High blood pressure is a serious condition that affects millions of Americans, so it’s important to be able to monitor your blood pressure at home. A simple wrist blood pressure monitor can be an inexpensive way to do this and can help you keep track of your blood pressure over time.

7. Glucose Meter

If you or someone in your household has diabetes, a glucose meter is an essential tool for monitoring blood sugar levels. These devices are relatively inexpensive and easy to use, so there’s no excuse not to have one on hand.

8. Breathing Treatments

If you or someone in your household suffers from asthma or another respiratory condition, it’s important to have a supply of breathing treatments on hand. These can help to relieve symptoms and make it easier to breathe during an attack.

9. Supplemental Oxygen

For people with severe respiratory conditions, supplemental oxygen may be necessary at times. If this is the case, make sure you have a good supply of oxygen tanks or other delivery devices so that you’re never without the oxygen you need.

10. Basic Medical Supplies

In addition to the items above, there are a few other basic medical supplies that everyone should keep in their home. These include things like bandages, gauze, and tape; gloves; scissors; and tweezers. By keeping these items on hand, you’ll be prepared for minor injuries and ailments.

Having a well-stocked home medical supply closet is an important part of being prepared for anything life throws your way. By making sure you have the items on this list, you can rest assured knowing that you’re ready for anything.

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