4 first aid essentials for travelling families

SUgarpuff could do with a little Kids First Aid training by the look of this bandaging job

So you’ve booked your holiday, packed the sunscreen and invested in some cool new holiday fashions for the fam. But before you get too excited, there’s one holiday essential you may have forgotten!

Quite possibly the most important thing a parent can take anywhere is the knowledge of exactly what to do in the event of a medical emergency.

Like most new parents, Mr Eats World and I vigilantly planned our first major holiday with a then 5-month old Raffles. I painstakingly ticked all the boxes on our long preparation list and spent wads of money on a primo portable cot, packed multiple changes of clothes, familiar toys, nappies, blankets and a specially prepared first aid kit, which I fussed and sweated over to ensure we were covered for every possible emergency. Which was all well and good, until it occurred to me that in the event of one occurring, I wouldn’t have had a clue what to do with it.

And so I booked straight into a Kids First Aid course. Something I believe is one of the best investments I ever made for my kids, particularly given our penchant for hauling their tiny arses to far-flung destinations where access to medical attention can be a little less accessible due to language barriers and distance.

Now, before you start your judgy-wudgy tut-tutting and blindly accuse me of being irresponsible for taking my little ones to such out of the way places, I’m not actually talking about dragging them kicking and screaming across the deserts of Outer Mongolia on the back of a goat (although I have to admit I probably would given half the opportunity). Seriously, even somewhere as family friendly as a Fiji Island may mean you’re a good hour by boat from the nearest hospital in the event of an emergency. While your resort will have some first aid facilities, your first response is the one that may prove the difference between life and death.

As a parent, seeing your child in an emergency is horrifying, but feeling helpless in that situation is worse.

Kids First Aid courses are designed to teach parents and caregivers how to respond to 10 of the most common first aid emergency situations that involve children. The courses are delivered exclusively by experienced paramedics, many parents themselves, who are uniquely qualified in emergency care with real-life experiences under their belt.

Given Raffles penchant for concussing himself, it has come in very useful indeed. But, seven years after my first Kids First Aid course, I confess my knowledge was getting rusty. And with two small children depending on me, the opportunity of a refresher course was too important to pass up.

 Kids playing doctor

After an intensive afternoon with NSW Ambulance Intensive Care Specialist and Kids First Aid instructor, Alan Cunneen, I’m now up to speed on the correct first aid protocol in the chilling event of one of my kids – or indeed an adult in my company – suffering from breathing difficulties, choking, fits, fevers, asthma, allergies, poisoning, burns, drowning, bleeding, fractures, and head or spinal injury.

Imagining my child in an emergency scenario is chilling, especially far from home, but I now feel much more prepared to respond calmly and confidently should an unexpected crisis occur.

The course also validated my belief that if you plan on travelling with kids and can’t answer the following four questions with a resounding yes, you shouldn’t be going anywhere! 

1. Do you know how to give CPR? Probably the most important single piece of first aid knowledge any parent needs to know is how and when to perform CPR (Cardiopulmonary resuscitation). Current CPR Protocol is to give 30 compressions followed by two breaths.
2. Do you know how to place a child in the recovery position? It is vital to understand the correct recovery position for adults, children and infants to prevent choking in unconscious patients.
3. Do you have basic first aid knowledge? Given that many basic first aid response protocols change, make sure your knowledge of protocols is current.
4. Do you have a current travel first aid kit? Does it include – at a minimum -the following items;

  • The phone number of your destination’s local emergency services (In Australia, emergency services can be reached on 000 but the number differs in other countries)
  • Infant thermometer
  • Infant paracetamol
  • Infant antihistamine
  • Antiseptic cream
  • Plasters/Band Aids
  • Tweezers
  • Infant insect repellent
  • Rehydration powder
  • Sting relief cream or spray
  • Scissors
  • Assorted bandages
  • Surgical tape for holding dressings
  • Safety pins
  • Any necessary prescription medications
  • A current first aid manual

To arm yourself with all the necessary first aid knowledge you’ll need to deal with the most common childhood emergencies at home or away, Kids First Aid hold courses in Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane, the Gold Coast, Perth and Adelaide. To book and find the closest course visit http://www.kidsfirstaid.com.au. Email now to secure 10% discount.

WIN WIN WIN!!!  *** This competition is now closed. The winner is Michelle V. Congrats! ***

To help keep your family safe, we have a Paramedic Endorsed First Aid Kit valued at $35.95 to giveaway to one of our readers.

To win simply tell us in the comments if you have ever been in a travel situation where having first aid knowledge could have helped.

Terms & Conditions:

  • Open to Australian residents only.
  • Prize is 1 x Paramedic Endorsed First Aid Kit valued at AU$35.95 
  • Giveaway opens on Friday 2 October 2015 at 6am and closes on Thursday 8th October 2015 at 9am AEST.
  • This is a game of skill. The judge’s decision will be final, and no correspondence will be entered into.
  • The winners must be contactable via email and will be contacted on Friday 9th October 2015.

Disclosure: BoyEatsWorld attended the Kids First Aid course as a guest.

26 Comments on 4 first aid essentials for travelling families

  1. Amy @ HandbagMafia
    October 2, 2015 at 7:25 am (10 months ago)

    I did a first aid course when my eldest was a baby and again later on but I definitely could use a refresher. I have used my knowledge more than once- the first major time was when out on the town at age 19, a man who’d had a few drinks fell off a shop awning. He was bleeding from both ears, unconscious and surrounded by drunk people who wanted to roll him onto his side and start CPR (despite the fact that he was breathing!). I also used it a lot working in aged care facilities, assisting a motor cyclist who was hit by a car and more. It’s so valuable.

    Reply
    • BOYEATSWORLD
      October 9, 2015 at 11:34 am (10 months ago)

      Wow, you’ve certainly put your skills to good use. The knowledge is invaluable

      Reply
  2. OurParallelConnection
    October 2, 2015 at 7:34 am (10 months ago)

    I am so in need to update my skills. In a moment of an emergency, I think I would panic now as my skills are a little rusty.

    Reply
    • BOYEATSWORLD
      October 9, 2015 at 11:35 am (10 months ago)

      That’s how I felt before my refresher!

      Reply
  3. Jody at Six Little Hearts
    October 2, 2015 at 10:19 am (10 months ago)

    It’s been years since I attended a course and I have 6 kids! Naughty, naughty!

    Reply
    • BOYEATSWORLD
      October 9, 2015 at 11:35 am (10 months ago)

      There’s always time to update those skills.

      Reply
  4. Malinda (@MBPaperPackages)
    October 2, 2015 at 7:06 pm (10 months ago)

    Thankfully both my husband and I have done first aid courses, though they probably need refreshing. So far we haven’t needed any major first aid skills with our kids while travelling (touch wood!!) just a few basic scrapes and scratches.

    Reply
    • BOYEATSWORLD
      October 9, 2015 at 11:36 am (10 months ago)

      That’s the best outcome – having the knowledge but never having to use it!

      Reply
  5. Alison Rulten
    October 3, 2015 at 8:19 am (10 months ago)

    First aid knowledge is something we will look into. Rrminds me of when our nephew nearly severed his finger. Blood everywhere and so easy to panick when you don’t know what to do. Great advice. Must ensure that we have an emergency kit packed and ready for our next escape.

    Reply
    • BOYEATSWORLD
      October 9, 2015 at 11:36 am (10 months ago)

      Well worth doing Alison

      Reply
  6. Mumma Hack
    October 3, 2015 at 2:10 pm (10 months ago)

    Thanks for this – A good reminder to update my skills. Last time I did a first aid course I was child-less!

    Reply
    • BOYEATSWORLD
      October 9, 2015 at 11:37 am (10 months ago)

      And some of the protocols change for kids! I can’t speak more highly of these courses.

      Reply
  7. Samantha
    October 3, 2015 at 10:33 pm (10 months ago)

    Great reminder! I did a first aid course when my daughter was 3 months old and she’s now 3 years.

    Reply
    • BOYEATSWORLD
      October 9, 2015 at 11:38 am (10 months ago)

      You can never have to much knowledge of what to do in an emergency!

      Reply
  8. Emily @ Have A Laugh On Me
    October 5, 2015 at 2:39 pm (10 months ago)

    Gosh wasn’t it THE best course ever? I took hubby and we both got so much out of it! x

    Reply
    • BOYEATSWORLD
      October 9, 2015 at 11:37 am (10 months ago)

      They’re the best Em, that’s why I did it twice! (That and because I have a shocking memory) 🙂

      Reply
  9. Michelle V
    October 6, 2015 at 7:30 pm (10 months ago)

    We do a lot of travelling on day trips, weekends and even camping as a family, and so far we have been pretty fortunate in that there have been no major accidents. But this first aid kit would be great for peace of mind as we explore our beautiful surroundings and all that nature has to offer!

    Reply
    • BOYEATSWORLD
      October 9, 2015 at 11:43 am (10 months ago)

      If you’re in the great outdoors so often I think you definitely need a first aid kit, so you;re the lucky winner of this one. x

      Reply
  10. Rene Young - Together we roam
    October 7, 2015 at 11:16 am (10 months ago)

    I have too have a “penchant for hauling … tiny arses to far-flung destinations”. I love a good first aid kit and we just did a refresher course. A take away if you get bitten by a bat, they are nasty creatures with parasites in their mouths. Get to ER immediately.

    Reply
    • BOYEATSWORLD
      October 9, 2015 at 11:38 am (10 months ago)

      I will remember to avoid bats!

      Reply
  11. Fairlie
    October 7, 2015 at 2:34 pm (10 months ago)

    I’ve done several first aid courses over the years – it’s invaluable knowledge.

    Reply
    • BOYEATSWORLD
      October 9, 2015 at 11:39 am (10 months ago)

      It sure is Fairlie x

      Reply
  12. Anne
    October 7, 2015 at 3:11 pm (10 months ago)

    When I was on holidays I had an elderly lady fall in front of me and she broke her arm. The break was that bad that the bone went through her skin. Lucky I am not skirmish but I must admit I did panic, I managed to get her to a hospital so it all worked out in the end. Really need to do a refresher course and get a first aid kit for the car.

    Reply
    • BOYEATSWORLD
      October 9, 2015 at 11:40 am (10 months ago)

      Yikes. That must have been scary for her and you! Glad you has some skills to help 🙂

      Reply
  13. Lorraine @ Not Quite Nigella
    October 8, 2015 at 7:15 pm (10 months ago)

    They’re actually really good things to know! I should really do one too. Hehe I could just picture Raffles in Outer Mongolia on a goat having the time of his life! 😀

    Reply
    • BOYEATSWORLD
      October 9, 2015 at 11:40 am (10 months ago)

      I could picture that too… 😉

      Reply

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