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30 basic items to include in a baby's first-aid kit

Baby care is a science in itself, for which first-time parents may not be fully equipped. What essential first-aid items should a baby first-aid kit contain?

Consider these 30 basic first-aid supplies for infant or toddler care.

These items belong in every new parent’s first-aid kit or medicine cabinet for routine baby care and in case of a medical emergency.

NOTE: Written by this author, this copyrighted material originally appeared on another publisher’s site. That site no longer exists. This author holds all rights to this content. No republication is allowed without permission.

Adapted by this user from public domain photo.

  1. Acetaminophen - Sold as Tylenol for Infants and other brands, this non-aspirin liquid anti-inflammatory will be useful to reduce pain from teething and other causes. Be sure to select the infant formulation. (The bottle cap is a measuring dropper for easy feeding.) Check with a pediatrician for specific instructions, based on the baby’s weight.
  2. Adhesive bandagesBand-Aids or other disposable adhesive strip bandages in various sizes and shapes are baby first-aid kit necessities.
  3. Adhesive tape - An assortment of widths will be helpful for various uses. Select the breathable, flexible type, not the shiny stiff ones (which can cause rashes).
  4. Antibacterial cream or ointmentNeosporin or other anti-infection products are helpful for cuts and scrapes.
  5. Anti-itch creamAveeno, calamine, or hydrocortisone cream can soothe itches, bug bites, and rashes.
  6. Antiseptic skin cleanser – Use Physoderm or another antiseptic to clean scrapes and cuts. (Hydrogen peroxide is not appropriate for babies, as it can harm delicate tissues.)
  7. Bug repellant - Child-safe insect repellent lotions and creams are widely available. Avoid aerosol spray products, which can get into children’s eyes or lungs.
  8. Cotton balls – Keep these in the original packaging, or store them in an airtight tub or zippered plastic bag.
  9. Cotton swabs – These are helpful for cleaning skin folds and other delicate areas. (Do not stick a cotton swab into a child’s ear, as the ear drum can easily be ruptured.)
  10. Decongestant - Liquid decongestants specifically formulated for children are the best choice. (Check with your pediatrician before giving medicine to your baby.)
  11. Emergency phone list – Include parents’ cell phones, neighbors’, physicians, and other key emergency contacts.
  12. First-aid book or chart – Post this somewhere prominent, where parents and babysitters can find emergency instructions easily.
  13. Flashlight – This is helpful for reading thermometers in the dark, or for checking a child’s ears, nose, throat, and more.
  14. Gauze wrap and pads – Keep these in their original packaging, if possible, to retain sterility.
  15. Hot water bottleThis can provide comfort during a cold or flu, or sooth a muscle ache. (Do not microwave this, and be sure to check heat carefully, so as not to burn an infant!)
  16. Ibuprofen – Sold as Advil, Motrin, or other brands, this non-steroidal anti-inflammatory medicine is excellent for reducing fever. Choose the infant formulation, and follow dosage instructions carefully. (Check with a pediatrician for specific instructions, based on the baby’s weight.)
  17. Ice packComfortable, flexible varieties can now be purchased economically. Wrap the ice pack in a soft cloth or blanket before placing on a child’s skin. (Terrycloth Boo-Boo animals can be found in stores.  These are sized to hold an ice cube for soothing a sore spot.)
  18. Medication list – Keep a journal of each child’s medicines, including dosage times and amounts.
  19. Medicine spoon – Most pharmacies offer tube-like spoons specifically, designed for young children.
  20. Nasal aspirator bulb – These are sold in baby departments of discount and drug stores. Use this to clear mucus from a baby’s nose. Clean thoroughly with soap and hot water after each use.
  21. Oral syringeComplete with measuring marks, this is ideal for administering medicines to infants who cannot yet sip from spoons. Boil or wash it in hot, soapy water after each use. (These can also be placed in dishwasher baskets, along with nipples and bottle caps.)
  22. Petroleum jelly – Use this to soothe dry skin, ease chapping, and lubricate rectal thermometer before using.
  23. Rubbing alcohol – Use this to clean thermometers, tweezers, scissors, and other tools before and after each use.
  24. Scissors – Keep these handy for cutting stuck diapers, first-aid tapes, and more. (Rounded ends are safer, as they will not poke a young child.)
  25. Soap – Choose a mild liquid soap, such as Ivory. Antibacterial, perfumed, and deodorant soaps may irritate babies’ skin.
  26. Special health needs list – Keep a roster of each child’s allergies, medication sensitivities, and other individual health issues.
  27. SunscreenBaby sun protection lotions are PABA-free, non-stinging, gentle, and generally safest.
  28. Thermometer – Traditionally, a rectal thermometer has been used for babies. Now, flexible digital, forehead, and even ear thermometers are also available. A well-stocked first-aid kit will have all three.
  29. Tongue depressors – These smooth wooden sticks are used to check a child’s throat. They can also be used as finger-splints, if needed.
  30. Tweezers – These will help to remove ticks, slivers, and foreign objects.

A first-aid kit makes a super baby shower or new baby gift.

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On what day of the week were you born?

I was born on a Monday. What day was your birthday? Wanna find out?

Why would you want to know upon which day your birthday happened to fall?

Maybe it’s simple curiosity. I found it sort of fascinating.

Plus, there’s an old nursery rhyme about the days of the week and the children born on each of them. Ever heard this one?

Image created by this user on quote generator. All rights reserved.
Monday’s child is fair of face,
Tuesday’s child is full of grace,
Wednesday’s child is full of woe,
Thursday’s child has far to go,
Friday’s child is loving and giving,
Saturday’s child works hard for his living,
And the child that is born on the Sabbath day
Is bonny and blithe, and good and gay.
- Traditional Nursery Rhyme

Fair of face? That’s supposed to point to pulchritude, either cuteness or glamour. (I beg to differ, especially when I look in the mirror in just-cleaned reading glasses. Pretty scary. But I digress.)

Just for fun, I looked up the rest of my family. My husband was a Saturday baby. According to the poem, that means he “works hard for a living.”

And my kids? Well, I have a Monday baby (like me) and a Wednesday baby. My Monday-born girl is a beauty, but so is the midweek-born one. The poem says the Wednesday-born child would be “full of woe.” I beg to differ there, because that kid is a hilarious and cheerful one, who brings compassion and humor to nearly every situation.

How does your own day of birth measure up to your own personality?

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Temper’s perking over an Amazon 3rd party vendor

Yes, my temper is perking a bit.

Sometimes a Fine Trade is anything but a fine trade, especially when it comes to returning an unwanted item.

I’m ready to spill the beans over this one.

We received a Keurig K55 coffeemaker as a gift for Christmas. The generous giver included the Amazon receipt, which was handy, since a certain someone in our house (the only one who actually drinks coffee) decided we didn’t actually need this item.

The product package is still sealed and unopened. We assume the item is not defective or damaged in any way. 

I tried to return the coffeemaker.

Usually, Amazon returns go through without a hitch, especially as we pay to be Amazon Prime customers. We have done so for several years.

OK, so I went through all the right motions on Amazon. Within a week or so, I received the approval code for the item return. But it did not include an accommodation for the shipping.

I contacted the third party vendor (a company called Fine Trade).

Something’s brewing here, but it’s sure not coffee.

Checking the order number on the item return, I discovered that the buyer had purchased through this particular third party vendor on Amazon, probably because this seller advertised that a small amount of the proceeds of the sale would go to a chosen charity. That all sounds good.

But their customer service and return policies leave a lot to be desired.

Here’s how this still-unresolved process has unfolded (quoting directly from correspondence I have on file).

December 30th – from
We've accepted your return request. Once Fine Trade receives the return, we'll issue a refund to your Amazon account.

The gift sender will not be notified about your return.

My response:

I am attempting to return a gifted Keurig K55 Single Serve Programmable K-Cup Pod Coffee Maker, Black. I have received your approval for the return. However, the shipping label and instructions do not indicate how to arrange pre-paid / credited shipping or which carrier to select. This is a large item, and (particularly as an Amazon Prime customer), I am not satisfied with paying for shipping to return an item we do not want. Please advise. Thank you.

January 2nd – from

Here is a copy of the e-mail that you sent to Fine Trade. Please allow 2 business days for the seller to respond.

January 3rd – from Fine Trade

Thanks, please provide Amazno [sic] order number so that we can assist you accordingly? Please contact us if you have any questions or concerns.

My response:

Two weeks later, I still await your reply on this matter. Order: xxxxxxxxxxxxxx. Return authorization: xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx . The package has been ready to ship for weeks. Awaiting your shipping code/instructions. Please advise ASAP. Thank you.

January 15 – from Fine Trade

Thanks for getting back to us. I'm very sorry to hear that you have returned your item but yet to receive refund. I apologize for the inconvenience caused. I've gone through the details of this order and found that you have returned this item on your own. So please provide me return tracking number as soon as possible so that I can forward to our return department for refund. Please let me know if there are any other questions. I'll be glad to help.

My response:
Still trying to resolve this issue and awaiting a satisfactory response from your company.
Order: xxxxxxxxxxxxxx. Return authorization: xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx .
The USPS quoted a price of nearly $50 to ship this Keurig coffeemaker back to you for a refund that is supposed to total about $75. I am extremely unhappy about this and unwilling to pay this shipping.
I am a professional journalist, and I routinely do plenty of product /service reviews. I have never seen this problem with a vendor before. Please advise immediately about how this situation may be resolved properly.

As of January 24, I have received no response to my latest missive.

Does Fine Trade actually expect me to shell out $47.50 to return an item that will credit my Amazon account with about $75? And that assumes that they will actually follow-through on the credit. Based on their track record with me so far, I am not feeling so sure about that.

The item was purchased in early December. Their return policy goes for 30 days. Sure, I made the initial return request long before that period elapsed. But who knows?

I’m not steamed at Amazon over this. But this third party vendor gives me grounds for growling.

Count me out as a potential Fine Trade customer.

And look out. Somebody we know is gonna get a brand-new coffeemaker for an upcoming birthday.

Lesson learned: Not all Amazon vendors hold to the same customer service standards, return policies, or business ethics. It pays to check them out before ordering. (Of course, all bets are off, when items are received as gifts from well-meaning senders.)

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