My Summertime Natural First Aid Kit
Travel, road trips, hiking, and camping are treasured parts of our summer routine. With all that play and outdoor time, though, some days we run into owies, tummy upsets, bug bites, rashes, headaches, sunburn, and the like. Knowing I prefer to treat these common conditions with the help of Mother Nature’s pharmacy, I created a first aid kit that I now bring with us everywhere, especially when we travel. It’s got bandages, wound dressing basics, and all the chemical-free remedies I’ve found to be effective.
Aloe Vera Gel is so calming for the skin. It eliminates irritation, has anti-inflammatory qualities, and promotes healing. Rich in antioxidants and beneficial vitamins, it will help regenerate cells faster and more efficiently than mainstream topical gels. Plus, you can use it for blisters and smaller burns, too.
Boiron Arnicare Gel and Pellets are homeopathic versions of Arnica, available as ingestible pellets and a gel topical crème. Arnica’s anti-inflammatory effect helps reduce pain, swelling, and bruising, while also promoting wound healing by boosting circulation.
Herb Farm Original Balm is a soothing Comfrey Salve, perfect for healing cuts, bruises, scrapes, bug bites, rashes, hives, and eczema.
Activated Charcoal is one of my favorites for its toxin-drawing qualities. We find it extremely effective for painful bug bites and bee stings; mix some powder with coconut oil to apply directly. You can also take it in capsule form for almost any sort of digestive upset—gas, unsettled stomach, food poisoning, diarrhea, etc. For adults, we swallow two capsules with water. For kids, we crack open a capsule and mix the contents into a spoonful of raw honey or applesauce to “help the medicine go down”.
Also, Essential Oil Insect Repellents are DEET-free and amazing. Create your own using Rosemary, Lemongrass, and Citronella oils for an all-natural solution to keep the bugs away.
Other oils that are handy to keep with you at all times:
Peppermint - for digestion, headaches, motion sickness, seasonal threats, and cooling (for over-heated bodies)
Lavender - for relaxation/calm, difficulty falling asleep, direct application to burns (both sunburns and from fire/hot water), and insect bites.
Tea Tree - for cleaning scratches (mixed with water before applying to skin), for rashes and skin soothing, and for cleaning/disinfecting while camping.
Eucalyptus - for respiratory challenges. We use eucalyptus in a face steam for congestion or sinus troubles. You can also dilute the essential oil with coconut oil or olive oil and apply it externally to the feet and chest to help open nasal passageways.
Coconut Oil - I can never say enough about coconut oil; I really do use it for everything! From skin salve, to diaper cream, to makeup remover, to antifungal treatment. I always keep some in the first aid kit to add to essential oils, to take internally, to use when applying tinctures, to help absorption of essential oils applied externally, and for dry skin and chapped lips.