By Samantha Nicole Alarilla
Quick! Kuya Mon was cooking lunch, his hand slipped while he was using the knife, and now there’s blood everywhere! You rush to your medicine cabinet in search of antiseptics, bandages, and possibly some painkillers – but you find it devoid of anything of use except for some cobwebs and expired vitamins. Why is that?
Every home should be equipped with a well-stocked medicine cabinet just in case medical emergencies – such as mishaps with a kitchen knife – arise. We all have to be prepared for any worst-case scenarios by having the means to alleviate pain or ailments until they can be properly treated or looked at by professionals. The ideal location of our medicine cabinets should be in a communal location where all family members can access it without difficulty. Remember, when accidents happen, we have to think and move fast. A medicine cabinet will be useless if you put it behind a fort of furniture or in the deepest storage areas of your home.
Now, for the most crucial part! What should your medicine cabinet contain?
1. List of Emergency Numbers
It is suggested by many to have a laminated – or at least durable – list of emergency numbers posted directly on the medicine cabinet or near the cabinet. Included in your list should be 9-1-1, the nationwide emergency hotline, numbers of your doctors or specialists, ambulance services, and the fire department.
These include Betadine (an antiseptic), antibiotic ointment, rubbing alcohol, bandages and gauzes, thermometers, tweezers, scissors, flashlights (with spare batteries), pill cutters, safety pins, hot water bottles, splints, magnifying glasses – to name a few. These are the things that would normally constitute a complete first-aid kit.
3. Medicine for common Ailments
When we say common ailments, we think of headaches, fevers, colds, and coughs, and the go-to medicine we reach for when we get them. These would be ibuprofens like Advil and Alaxan, paracetamols like Biogesic , decongestants like Decolgen or Neozep, and cough medicine. Make sure that no member of the household is allergic to or incompatible with these kinds of medicine.
4. Prescribed Medicine for past Illnesses that could occur again
These illnesses could be allergies of any kind, asthma, or any other recurring sicknesses that a member of the household is known to have. Be sure to have prescription medicine well stocked in case of any relapses. Also check periodically to ensure that the medicine is not expired.
It may also be good to keep a first aid manual inside or close to your medicine cabinet. Some manuals may be available online for downloading, such as from the Red Cross website.
Now that we’re all set, it’s time to make it your mission to designate a cabinet space that meets all or most of the location standards for your medicine cabinet, and to stock it up well with the essentials! Remember, preparation and prevention is the key to safety and good health. There is no better way than to be ready for anything than having the perfect medicine cabinet.