First aid in an emergency situation should never be overlooked. Even the smallest cut can get infected and could potentially turn fatal. This is why you should always be prepared with bandages and ointment. When deciding which bandage you should pack for your first aid kit in a bug-out bag, here are some things you should consider:
As adorable as those Hello Kitty bandages are, they’re probably not the kind of bandage you want as first aid in your bug-out bag. As far as simple adhesive bandages go, fabric based bandages are preferable. The woven fibers in fabric bandages allow for more flexibility and overall movement than the plastic ones. If you are a more active person or need to place the bandage in an unusually bendable area, such as your elbow, you’ll want to use a fabric bandage.
For any type of wound that needs to be pulled back together, use a butterfly bandage. Butterfly bandages are fat on the sides and skinny in the middle. The skinny middle is stick-free as to avoid getting stuck to the actual wound. As butterfly bandages are often used for deeper cuts, you may need to use something thicker, like gauze pads, first while putting pressure on the bleeding point before placing a butterfly bandage over the wound.
Despite what its name would lead you to believe, moleskin is not actually made from a furry rodent but is a soft blend of cotton fabric that can be used as a preventative measure against blisters and to alleviate the pain of a blister. As blisters often form on the foot, you will most often be using moleskin there. Because of moleskin’s thick, furry properties, it creates an effect that is kind of cushiony which allows it to give fairly easily. Moleskin helps to avoid the blister from rubbing against your shoes, skin, clothes, dirt, or anything that could, potentially, irritate or infect the blister further. Adhesive moleskin that you can buy for first-aid kits does not cover the blistered area but surrounds or frames it. Most moleskin comes in squares or rolls that will likely need to be cut just bigger than the blistered area. Then it will need to be cut again to create a hole as big as the blister. This will make the moleskin piece resemble a flat, unappetizing donut. The blister should fit snuggly in the hole you’ve just cut out so that it is still exposed and not covered, with a ring of moleskin bordering it.
For unusual areas that a normal bandage won’t fit, such as between toes, fingers, knuckles etc., or require high mobility, you can use a liquid bandage. Liquid bandages are exactly like they sound, it is actually just a special, sticky liquid that often come in what looks like a nail polish bottle. Applying a liquid bandage to your wound creates a strong waterproof seal to pull the skin back together and to keep out infection.
In reality, there really is no such thing as a ‘bad bandage,’ unless it has already been used and contaminated. This idea would be an oxymoron as even the cheapest bandages can help you heal. But, that being said, not all bandages are created equal either. There are bandages for big cuts, small cuts, blisters, burns, and the list goes on, but not all bandages are for external bleeding and, of those that are to help with bleeding, some tend to stop the bleeding better or stay on longer than others. These are just a few preferable bandage options you should seriously consider when adding bandages to your emergency first-aid kit.