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Survival/first Aid Gear


SnoWolf

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I should also add, it's important that the knife be carbon steel, not stainless. Carbon steel takes a keener edge, and can be quickly and easily sharpened with any smooth stone that would be perfect for skipping. Even if you lug around a 2-sided whetstone, stainless steel takes a lot longer, and will never be as sharp. An EZ-Lap takes practice, or it is more likely to ruin a knife than sharpen it. And those little Rambo style whetstones border on useless.

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Agree with the alcohol disinfectant, but not the medicinal benfits of ingesting it.

Alcohol is a diuretc which can exacerbate dehydration.

And of course in too large a quantity it can hamper your judgement.

A better caurterising agent is silver nitrate, which your pharmacy can provide in a dried form.

Dave

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I think cayenne is a better choice for a first aid kit, because it can stop all forms of bleeding, both internal and external, speeds healing by stimulating circulation to the local area, and can even stop a heart attack. If someone takes a bad fall and has internal bleeding or a bad concussion, a tsp of cayenne in a cup of hot water can keep them alive until they can reach medical treatment. Applied externally, it only reacts with the wound site, causes the flesh to tighten up, and will actually decrease scar tissue. Silver nitrate reacts with any and all flesh it comes in contact with, so in a moment of panic you're likely to cauterize more than you meant to. And it will turn your skin a blue-grey or even black, which can only be corrected with cosmetic surgery.

 

Put another way, if someone gets a 4 inch laceration, they can quickly slap on a liberal dose of cayenne and stop the bleeding. Period. Yes, it stings a little. ;) Try that same trick with silver nitrate, and you've just given yourself a chemical burn the size of your hand. Silver nitrate has some great applications in surgical settings, and it's good for removing warts, but that's where I'd draw the line.

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The silver nitrate I'm referring to comes on the end of small stick about matchbook in diameter. It is readiiy applied to small cuts and sores, but not intended for large wounds. These days, for quick closure of small cuts it's kidna been replaced by superglue. (which doesn't disinfect)

For larger wounds, the general rule of thunb is to first stop the bleeding with pressure. Then disinfect as best as possible, ideally with alcohol, dettol or hydrgen peroxide. It's unlikley you'll be carrying that in a small packable first aisd kit, hence the polysporin, alcohol wipes or perhaps cayenne (although I don't know if Cayenne is an efecive disinfectant.). Then you need to bind the wound with gauze and tape to pervent bleeding from reoccuring and keep the crap out of the wound.

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My mistake. I have no first hand experience with the little sticks, just the powder.

 

Not to get all semantical on you, but I'd say you can stop the bleeding with pressure on medium wounds, the kind that might get stitches, but don't necessarily need them. Large wounds don't stop bleeding from pressure alone. Trust me, I've had plenty of other people's blood on me. A tourniquet, sure.

 

Yes, cayenne is an effective disinfectant. It is anti-bacterial and anti-fungal. Counter-intuitively, it also has anti-inflammatory properties. During the Black Death, labourers from the spice trade were conscripted for corpse disposal because they seemed to be the only group of people that weren't getting sick. Some modern herbalists credit this to cayenne, which was a part of the spice traders' hands and clothes, just like grease for a mechanic. Of course, it's also thought that the bubonic plague was brought to Europe via the Spice Route, so who knows.

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The silver nitrate I'm referring to comes on the end of small stick about matchbook in diameter. It is readiiy applied to small cuts and sores, but not intended for large wounds. These days, for quick closure of small cuts it's kidna been replaced by superglue. (which doesn't disinfect)

For larger wounds, the general rule of thunb is to first stop the bleeding with pressure. Then disinfect as best as possible, ideally with alcohol, dettol or hydrgen peroxide. It's unlikley you'll be carrying that in a small packable first aisd kit, hence the polysporin, alcohol wipes or perhaps cayenne (although I don't know if Cayenne is an efecive disinfectant.). Then you need to bind the wound with gauze and tape to pervent bleeding from reoccuring and keep the crap out of the wound.

 

I have seen silver packs used on burn survivors, it is very effective. It is no wonder why Roman and Greek soldiers chewed on silver coins for a few days before a major offensive. Silver has wonderful healing properties to it to say the least. I also saw it packed into a considerable sized leg wound that would not heal for 3 years and then healed within 6 months.

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