First Aid Essentials Every Mom Should Have

Pregnancy & Postpartum

First Aid Essentials Every Mom Should Have


While your kisses absolutely help heal boo-boos and ouchies, there are other essential items every mom should have on hand in case of emergency.

In addition to making your first aid shopping list, consider signing up for first aid and CPR classes so you're more comfortable when emergency situations occur. This will also better equip you to distinguish life-threatening injury or illness that requires medical attention from less serious scrapes, bumps and burns you can handle yourself.

When creating a toolkit, it's a good idea to make more than one. The best places for toolkits are at home, in a diaper bag and in your car. Lastly, make sure you store your toolkits in safe locations where curious baby hands can't reach them since many of these items can be hazardous if left within reach of a child.

Your first aid toolkit should include:

  • Two pairs of sterile gloves (avoid latex if your family has latex allergies)
  • Sterile dressings to stop bleeding
  • Soap and antibiotic towelettes to disinfect
  • Antibiotic ointment to prevent infection
  • Burn ointment to prevent infection
  • Adhesive bandages in various sizes
  • Eye wash solution to flush the eyes (can also be used as a general decontaminant)
  • Thermometer (the most accurate temperature is recorded from a rectal reading)
  • Petroleum jelly to lubricate rectal thermometers
  • Pain reliever, such as infant acetaminophen or ibuprofen (make sure you know the correct dosage and have an oral syringe)
  • Antihistamines, as recommended by your doctor, for insect bites, hives and allergic reactions
  • Topical calamine lotion or hydrocortisone cream (.5%) for insect bites and rashes
  • Diapers
  • Bottles
  • Powdered milk and/or formula
  • Moist towelettes
  • Diaper rash ointment
  • Any medications the baby may need
  • Scissors
  • Tweezers
  • Child-safe sunscreen
  • Nasal aspirator bulb
  • Package of tongue depressors for checking sore throats
  • Small flashlight
  • Blanket
  • First-aid manual: American Medical Association Handbook of First Aid and Emergency Care

In addition to all of the above items, it's important to have the following names and numbers:

  • Baby's pediatrician
  • Local hospital
  • The American Association of Poison Control Center's national emergency hotline: 800-222-1222
  • Local police and fire departments
  • Two closest neighbors (in case you need immediate assistance, such as a ride to the hospital or child care for an older sibling). You'll also want to post these names and numbers on the refrigerator for your convenience and for babysitters.

See all parenting content from HealthyWomen.org.

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