The bicycle first aid kit is like a helmet – every day, these two accessories are not needed for anything. But in the event of an accident, it’s better to have them with you (helmet, of course, on your head). I used to are bike helmets really necessary only for bicycle trips out of town, and the first aid kit consisted of a list of painkillers and a piece of plaster with a dressing. After my accident, I started to ride the “nut” on my head, and in the meantime, my bicycle touring first aid kit has grown for additional equipment. With time, it even got a little too big, but I will tell you about it in a moment.
What to pack in?
How to prepare a bicycle first aid kit? The first, crucial thing – the container to which we store the dressings and medicines must be watertight. And if we do not have one, it is worth at least packing everything into string purses. The packaging should have a white cross mark on it, preferably on a green background – this is a set of colors recommended by the European Union.
Such a sign will make it easier for even other witnesses who want to give us first aid to find a first aid kit in our luggage. We do not necessarily have to stick to the green, the red background can also be. As a curiosity, I write that the emblem of the Red Cross (on a white background) is protected by law and for its unlawful use, you can even receive a fine of up to PLN 2,500 – this is enshrined in the relevant Act (Journal of Laws 1964 No. 41 item 276).
Carrying a first aid kit
First aid kit should always be at hand. In the event of an emergency, we are about to provide help, not searching for luggage in search of dressings or medicaments. Ideally, the first aid kit should be attached directly to the bicycle (to the frame, steering wheel or under the saddle) or to the luggage – outside the backpack or pannier. But in this situation, we cannot keep anything that cannot tolerate high temperature (eg drugs, lotions). I recommend such preparations to hide in a pannier or bag.
What to pack in the first aid kit
The main thing – we take the most necessary bicycle equipment and nothing more. The point is not to dig through a cavernous sack at a crucial moment, in search of a bandage or plaster. And if you cannot stop taking a few extra trinkets, I recommend dividing the first aid kit into two parts – one with the necessary accessories, the other – the other ones.
When assembling a first aid kit, it is good to think about where, how much time and how many people are going. And depending on this, choose the number and type of bicycle equipment list accordingly. The list of items to be packed, which I will mention in this entry, is also worth watching. Planning and preparation for the bike for travel to success and bicycle first aid kit management
This is a set that I consider to be obligatory, bringing help “here and now”. Sometimes there is simply no time to look for a pharmacy or wait for help (an ambulance will not come anywhere within a dozen or so minutes), and every moment counts.
– Elastic bandage
– Sterile compresses
– Plain, small patch
– Patch with a dressing (preferably cut into pieces of various lengths)
– wound disinfection preparation (eg Octenisept – below I will develop this topic)
– Small scissors or a knife (to cut a bandage or plaster)
– Disposable gloves (useful for helping someone or if someone is going to help us)
– Mask for artificial respiration
– Rescue blanket (or NRC foil) – protects against excessive cooling of the body (at least for some time), it can also be used for protection against the wind. It also works the other way, i.e. it helps protect from overheating. Learn more online bicycle shop in the USA.
As for the decontamination of wounds or abrasions, the first thing that comes to mind is hydrogen peroxide. Unfortunately, although hydrogen peroxide cleanses the wound itself well, it does not act too germicidal; it can also damage healthy tissues. In addition, what is important in children, as well as sensitive adults (like me) – H 2 O 2 after applying on the wound, can very pinch. Therefore, instead of hydrogen peroxide, I recommend Octenisept – a drug whose manufacturer became a partner of this entry. I have been using Octeniseptu for a good few years, it is effective, it has a convenient form of dosing (atomizer), neutral smell and what is important – it does not tweak like oxygenated water 🙂
Octenisept contains octenidine dihydrochloride and phenoxyethanol. These substances with long and meaningless names destroy bacteria, fungi, viruses, yeasts, and protozoa. We apply it directly to the wound or soak it with a swab, and contact with the skin should last at least a minute, although a longer time is recommended. It can be used not only to decontaminate wounds or abrasions but also after biting the insect or piercing the bladder on the foot.
Here I have collected equipment that can also be useful in any situation. It is not necessary, but having it on hand can help a lot. Especially when we’re far from the pharmacy.
Oh, some of these accessories may also be needed in the basic set. It all depends on when and where we are going.
– Wound closure straps (Steri-Strip, RudaStrip) – connect the edges of cut wounds, accelerating healing. They also allow you to protect the wound, before we reach the doctor who will sew it.
– Something for diarrhea (medical charcoal, Nifuroxazide, Smecta) – they are useful not only for poisoning but also for minor “revolutions” of the stomach, related to the effort and pressure on our tripe from sitting on a bicycle. I use coal myself on longer routes.
– Analgesics / antipyretic tablets (paracetamol, ibuprofen)
– Effervescent tablets with electrolytes – they supplement the missing micronutrients and prevent dehydration. They are useful especially at high temperatures and high effort.
– Skin sore cream (Sudocrem, Atlanta) – even the best-fit saddle and mega comfortable pants with an insole will not give a 100% guarantee that we will not wipe the skin somewhere. Especially in the heat and long distances. Such a cream quickly brings relief in some places.
Tanning lotion – preferably with a strong filter
– Something with panthenol – if on sunny days you do not use tanning lotion; it may end up with skin burns. Cycling it is very easy because, because of the cooling momentum of the air, you do not feel so much of the sun’s rays. I use pantheon in the form of foam, but there are also sprays and gels.
– Analgesic and anti-inflammatory gel – for the lubrication of overloaded legs. It is good to have it with you for longer, multi-day trips, especially if you plan to cover a greater number of kilometers.
– A tool for pulling out tongs – I recommend bicycle first aid kit special tweezers with a hook at the end (it will also be useful to take out, for example, splinters). You can also buy a special sucking tick pump (as well as a sting after being bitten by a bee).
– Mosquito repellent (something chemical with DEET or based on essential oils) – although I have the impression that mosquitoes and moths have become resistant to all preparations, however, when entering the forest, it is worth pricking/smearing. Be sure to read the instruction manual, agents with a high concentration of DEET can destroy clothing.
– Gel soothing bites (Feistily, witch hazel jelly) – it will come in handy if we’re going to a place where there are a lot of mosquitoes (preparations for deterring everyone will not go away). I used to be very useful to me after biting a horse’s fly.
– A few safety pins and rubber bands can be useful not only in medical situations
What else to put into the bicycle first aid kit?
Leaving somewhere where access to pharmacies or medical help is difficult, you can think about taking additional equipment. A thermometer, eye drops, a stronger painkiller (prescription), a broad-spectrum antibiotic or drugs recommended on the territory of a given country (it is worth visiting the website of the Pole Abroad run by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs).
With time, on the occasion of subsequent trips, the first-aid equipment will shrink or expand as you gain experience. It is not worth carrying a half of the pharmacy with you unless we are under the care of a large group of cyclists. On small trips, the behavior of relative minimalism will work. And what must you find in your bicycle first aid kit?