Chapter 14. First Aid Kit, a must in the Beginners Guide to Bicycle Touring

first result for me when typing in first aid kit in google images

To the left is the first image to come up when I type first Aid kit into Google images, turns out they are a band from the UK…

First the Basics –

Plant Based diet – is best for overall health of body especially immune system.  That comes from scientists across the spectrum and is now accepted as irrefutable.  As we are what we eat, and as Hippocrites says, “Let food be thy medicine and thy medicine be thy food.”.  If you look at wellness from this aspect, things change, you are now ahead of the curve.

TEETH – get them checked before you go and at regular intervals.  Obviously if it causes you repeated pain, get it checked out.  Super basic and yet, it has to be said based on the number of people I personally know who do the opposite.

Stuff to carry –

–       Have a good lip balm, made with natural ingredients, petroleum jelly dries lips further, its made with oil, not the good for you kind, right, petrol-e-um…

–       Activated charcoal, stomachaches are no fun, nor is diarrhea, this is an easy fast and effective way to rid yourself of any symptoms dealing with the gut.  Also, try and get used to eating spicy food, this is preventative medicine for all kinds of gut related problems.  The spicier it is, the more parasites and no see-ums run the opposite way, i.e., right out the backdoor…

–       Something to provide relief should you be bitten by insects.

A good multi-spectrum skin rash ointment, tincture, whatever you are comfortable with is highly recommended. As you will be outside of your immediate comfort zone in regard to many different aspects, and that you will have different bathing and clothes washing habits, be prepared in the eventuality of some sort of rash. Handle it immediately and it should serve you with no difficulties, let it go and it could ruin your trip.
They are common, fall under many different categories (contact dermatitis, eczema, heat etc.) and are induced by stress of the mind and of the physical environments you may find yourself.  A Chinese medicine heat rash tincture is good, a cortisone or steroid cream work really well, BUT, they weaken the skin, so there is a price to pay, as they are both lightweiht, carry both…=]

–       Triple Antibiotic Ointment for cuts, scrapes and bruises.  This is most effective when used with a product called Yunnan BaiyoYunnan_baiyao_powderLook it up, if you get even deep nasty wounds, you mix the Yunnan with the ointment until it turns a dark, thick mud like mixture and pack it in the hole, do once a day.  If you think you have internal bleeding, do you see that little round dark red ball amidst the powder, that is for internal bleeding.  You get into a serious wreck and you think something is happening on the inside which shouldn’t be, pop the pill!

–      Suture kit, you never know when you may need it and if you need it and don’t have it, well, that’s a bummer.  Make sure you speak with someone who knows how to stitch wounds so you don’t end up with more trouble than you would have had.  For instance, a deep wound should be cleaned as best as possible but not sutured tightly as this may trap bacteria inside, leave room for the body to push stuff out.  There is a lot to it, so please, make sure you speak with someone who knows.  A great place would be your local fire station.  You can also practice stitching on fruit.

–      Thermoplasts, these are super stick band aids that really do not come off easily.  Can be used to prevent blisters as well by sticking them in the blister zone.

–     Duct tape, as above, can be used to prevent blisters, seal sucking chest wounds, hold limbs together, etc. Sounds crazy until you need it.

–     Carry a mutli spectrum anti fungal, one that would cover athletes foot, ringworm, etc.  These are minor inconveniences until they go for too long, and in some places, you simply will not have access to medicine that wold fix them. If you ever had a case of athletes foot go untreated for a few days, it can be very serious indeed and lead to infections!  If you are completely without first aid for this, the best thing I have fond is to go barefoot and to keep the toes separated, this can be done with many things, from bits of wood or cloth.

–     Long sleeve shirts for sunny areas.  I have gotten sunburn that you can not believe.  Avoid it!  Further, a long sleeve shirt while allowing you to feel hotter, actually does a good job of preventing excess moisture loss.

–     Whole food multivitamins or Superfood supplements –   There are so many to choose from, I will whittle the list down to you using wholefood vitamins or superfoods.  As both are made from actual food, the body can use all of it where as with many of todays’ synthetic vitamins, it simply does not provide the body what it needs and even forces the body to lose “energetically” as many synthetic vitamins are merely something to be processed out as they are unusable.  Much like to re moisturize your skin, you need the most natural oils possible, use synthetic oil and you” ll see just how important!  Same applies to the inside of your workings… Please check out the SUPERFOOD section for ideas of what would be best for you.

This is a basic idea, this is what we have, in addition we have essential oils, acupuncture needles, a cupping set and various other “things”.  Take what you feel most comfortable with.  Perhaps you would feel safer with antibiotics, or chinchilla anti venom… whatever it is, bring it, of course you will have to carry it, but, this is the price we pay for an easy conscience, and sometimes, this is the greatest first aid of all, as the saying goes, when you need it, its not there and if you have it, you probably wont need it.