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Dr. Rich

I carry a simple first aid kit. It's contents is listed on my First Aid Kit Wiki. First aid in the wilderness is usually comfort based. If anything really bad happens, it's a MediVac to the hospital.

Some of the most common problems on the trail are sprains, blisters, and infection. Thus Vitamin-I (Ibuprofen), Moleskin, and range of cremes. Sometimes with the cremes I feel like one of those traveling snakeoil salesmen, but they work and are the hallmark of my first aid kit. Here's the rundown-

  • AfterBurnER: contains Benadryl and Benzocaine to stop the itch and keep you from scratching. Works on sunburns, poison plant rashes, and insect bites. If your in the wild, it's a good thing to have.
  • Tinactin: Anti-Fungal medication used to treat athletes foot, ringworm, and jock itch. Since your risk for this rash increases when you don't shower for a week, it's not a bad idea to keep it handy.
  • Bactroban: Prescription strength anti-bacterial used to treat Staph infections. Having this saved my ass (literally).

Back at the Naval Academy, a guy in my Platoon (23rd, 'rah) got a staph infection on his butt cheek and had to have the hole packed by a Detailer each night....no thanks. Having the Bactroban to apply early and often saved me a trip to the hospital and a hole in my ass from a flesh-eating bacteria.

Graphic, I know, but hopefully serious backpackers and hikers will take heed...because letting that stuff go for a few days can land you in a bad place. Again, not showering or changing clothes for days on end will increase your risk, so why not be prepared with a few 1 oz bottles of this stuff?

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