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Sports First Aid Kit

How do you want your Sports first aid kit to be?,Essentials of a good Sports first aid kit,Remedy comes easy with sports first aid kits

That nagging knee ache after a marathon or an ankle sprain at the rugby field is understandable. But entering a sporting track or a field without your sports first aid kit? Nah, that’s not being wise after all. A well stocked sports first aid kit is certainly an indispensable component of sporting culture. The contents in your first aid kit could well save your life at the sporting ground.

Everyone indulging in any kind of sporting activity, (outdoor sports or indoor sports) must possess a sports first aid kit. As a matter of fact, a sports first aid kit can even benefit a small child who is learning how to hold a bat and a ball, the only difference is that the utility of sports first aid kits depends largely on the kind of sport.
Athletes, for example, may be prone to knee related complaints. Similarly golfers may be susceptible to tendonitis (golfer’s elbow), a tennis player may be susceptible to tennis bone (tennis elbow), or a racing enthusiast may fear track mishaps followed by cuts and wounds. It therefore becomes pertinent that a person must be able to evaluate the kind of injuries he/she is prone to and then consider picking a suitable first aid kit.

Statistics obtained from the American Sports Data Inc., show that an estimated 50.6 million people above six years of age are known to indulge regularly in one sporting activity or the other such as running or cycling. Then there are another estimated 39.9 million people who indulge in recreational sporting activities like softball, bowling, basketball, tennis and so on. A good 15.3 million people do active outdoors such as hiking, mountaineering, skiing and soon. These figures were made available in 2005 and it’s obvious that the numbers have shot up now. That much is the significance of sports in our life and so is the demand of sport first aid kits.

So how would you want your sports first aid kit to be? There are several commercial pre-packaged sports first aid kits for every price range and sports. They range from kits handling minor emergencies to well stocked multi-compartment first aid kits with supplies for both multiple small injuries and enough stock for a major injury until ambulance arrives. Some kits which are available in the outdoor sports store are typically need-based depending upon the nature of the sport. If some kits contain a single one-time use instant chemical ice pack, others are equipped to carry supplies for six to ten chemical ice packs. Some others are available as just weekend, easy access first aid kits.

Whatever the size and price of these kits may be, ideally, they Include splinters, cardio-pulmonary resuscitation(CPR) gear, a pair of gloves or two, chemical ice packs and lots of bandages including assorted adhesive bandages. The price range can be anywhere from $ 5 to $ 500 (tentative figures).

Conforming gauze, instant cold compressors, butterfly wound closures, elastic bandage wrap, elbow and knee plastic bandage, fabric bandages, dressing pads, porous cloth athletic tape, premium grade moleskin, antibiotic ointment packs, antiseptic cleansing wipes, ibuprofen, aspirin tablets, a pair of scissors, and tweezers are usually included in commercial sports first aid kits.

Many sportsmen like to build their own supplies of a well stocked sports first aid kit. This, they do after thoroughly evaluating their needs according to the sport they are involved in. According to experts in medical emergencies, sportsmen do so because every sporting activity is different. They decide what supplies best fit their likelihood of injuries and then build on a sports first aid kit.
Creating your own kit should essentially comprise equipment and medications for wound management, and ice packs for pains and swellings. The kits you choose to keep your first aid equipment must be spacious and should have many compartments to carry your supplies. Avoid carrying plastic boxes.

Equipment used for general wound management should include a pair of scissors, tweezers, needle for splinters, antiseptic swipes, a pair of latex gloves (or any other if one is allergic to latex), sterile gauze, adhesive tape, antiseptic solution, bandages of different sizes, and ibuprofen for pain due to cuts scrapes or blisters.
Carry insulated first aid carriers since the ice packs you carry are reusable. Commercial first aid kits for sports mostly have only an instant one-time use chemical ice pack. Experts feel that this may not be sufficient to numb pain or reduce swelling completely. They are of the opinion that the best and the most efficient treatment for an injury is to immediately apply frozen ice pack in 15 minute sessions. Insulated first aid carriers will keep ice packs cold for several hours.

Fractures, sprains and muscle pull-related pain can get relief with neoprene joint braces, compression bandage/ice wrap, tri angular pieces of cloth for a sling or tourniquet.
For heat exhaustion or dehydration, it is necessary to carry sports drink water bottles, cold packs, sunscreen lotion, aloevera lotion and a chap-stick.

A calamine lotion, epinephrine and antihistamine are recommended medications for allergic reactions. Other general essentials in a sports first aid kit may include toilet paper, anti-diarrheal medications, thermometer, a mouthpiece in case of using CPR, blanket, whistle, flash light and plastic zip locks to keep supplies dry. More importantly, a handbook on first aid for sports in general is a must-have in your kit.

A word of caution: Sometimes sportspersons do have restrictions on certain medications. Consult your physician/physiotherapist before you use a first aid kit.

Whatever your choice and preferences of a sports kit may be, a good sports first aid kit can save your life at the sporting ground.
Published: 2008-02-03
Author: Paawana Poonacha Cariappa

About the author or the publisher
Byline articles for publications,PR content for corporates, syndicated articles for bigwigs, rhymes and short stories for children, and poetry for the like-minded...taking forward over 10 years experience as journalist/writer, presently working as Content Head for a Mumbai-based communications firm. You can view my bylines as "Paawana Poonacha" or "Paawana Poonacha Cariappa".

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