Did you know? This year alone Americans will get an average of three colds and suffer through 20 million cases of stomach flu. While you can’t always keep from getting sick, you can be ready to treat illness and injuries when they come your way. Be sure to keep these seven must-haves in your medicine cabinet so you can get back on your feet in no time.
You may think you’re hot, but when you’re actually suffering from a fever you need a thermometer to know if your condition is serious. Keep a digital thermometer on hand to monitor fevers and be sure to get rid of that old mercury one, since it literally contains poison.
- Antiseptic wipes
Don’t keep a bottle of alcohol around, instead use antiseptic wipes! They are great at killing infection-causing bacteria, plus are portable and kid friendly. Be sure to look for the kind that has Isopropyl Alcohol.
Sure, tweezers help you groom your killer brows, but they are also a lifesaver when you get a splinter. Splinters are chock full of bacteria, so it’s important to remove them ASAP. Also, tweezers can remove harmful ticks that may cause Lyme disease.
- Stomach Aids
Late-night corn dogs may have tasted great at the time, but the day after not so much! Never fear, you’ve got a bottle of the pink stuff – Pepto Bismol – on hand to help with all your stomach ills from indigestion to nausea to diarrhea. It’s also a good idea to keep antacids around for more mild cases of heartburn or sour stomach.
- Cold Medicine
Americans will suffer 1 billion colds this year alone! It’s a no-brainer then that you should stay stocked up on cold medicine. Be sure to buy several different medicines based on your symptoms. Decongestants help clogged noses, cough suppressants help with dry coughs and expectorants help with those pesky wet coughs.
- Pain Relievers
Whether it’s a headache, cramp or back pain, pain relievers can be just what the doctor ordered. Aspirin work well as a fever reducer, but are not recommended for children under 18 or anyone with a sensitive stomach; Ibuprofen and Naproxen help reduce swelling but also can cause stomach irritation; and, acetaminophen is a solid overall choice for general pain relief.
Band-Aids are an essential for any well-stocked medicine cabinet. Use a Band-Aid if you have a cut or scrape in an area that may get dirty like a hand or foot. Also, use Band-Aids for cuts or scrapes that will come in contact with clothes since this can irritate your injury even more.
Some additional medicine cabinet considerations
- Don’t store medicine in the bathroom
The worst place to keep medicine is actually the bathroom since moisture can cause it to lose its effectiveness or even become harmful. Instead use a cool, dry place like a linen closet to store medicine.
- Clean out medicine cabinet frequently
When medicine expires it begins to lose its effectiveness. Set a reminder every couple of months to clean out your medicine cabinet and dispose of any old medication. A good idea is to do this when you reset the clocks during time changes.
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