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Old 10-15-2011, 06:07 AM
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MorganRogers MorganRogers is offline
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Default Adhesive bandages (eg BandAids) won't stick if you keep them too long!

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Since BandAids (and other adhesive first aid supplies) are one the 3 essentials ("Beans, Bullets, BandAids"), I have stocked up on a fair number. On a recent trip out of town, I lugged the obligatory first aid kit, which happened to have the oldest box of Band Aids. I knocked the skin off a knuckle, requiring a Band Aid. It fell off! OK, so I try another, and another and another… none of them would stick. What the … ? I don’t recall that happening before.

Luckily I had a backup supply in the car that is much fresher, so one of those worked. But it got me to thinking, I have all these Band Aids (and other misc adhesive medical supplies) tucked away, I wonder how many of them are bad also ? I just researched it and the general consensus is that their shelf life is between 1 and 2 years, then (of COURSE) the adhesive begins to deteriorate. So… what would cause that adhesive to deteriorate ? I would think MOISTURE and/or OXYGEN.

What has been others' experience with this ? I am going to purchase a new lot and preserve them as I have food – in a Mylar bag with oxygen absorbers. Since I live in a low humidity environment I don’t think I will bother with desiccant. Am I on to something or fooling myself if I think I can slow that deterioration down ? I won’t know for a couple of years if it works, but wonder if anyone else has been through this process.

Last edited by MorganRogers; 10-16-2011 at 06:42 AM..
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Old 10-15-2011, 06:21 AM
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Good topic. I wonder if adhesive tape lasts any longer?
Old 10-16-2011, 09:28 AM
PrincessKraken PrincessKraken is offline
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It's the heat down there in TX. Bandaid's adhesive isn't going to hold up to the amount of heat a car gets in TX all year round.

Best bet, get some Wrap it Up (stuff they use on horses, it's the exact same stuff as coban but a heck of a lot cheaper) and gauze pads in different sizes.
Old 10-18-2011, 09:23 PM
Relentless Relentless is offline
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I had this same problem happen to the bandaids I kept in my patrol bag. Now I keep them in a ziplock and they seem to last much longer.
Old 10-23-2011, 08:56 AM
rachelinnys rachelinnys is offline
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bandaids only are good for a few years. anything over 5 years old are useless. the adhesive degrades.
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Old 10-23-2011, 09:27 AM
topdoc topdoc is offline
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What about vac-seal ?
Old 10-23-2011, 09:31 AM
Eugene Eugene is offline
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I've dug out some that were a few years old and the outer packaging was turning yellowish. I buy a bulk ox every 2-3 years now and rotatae them out
Old 10-23-2011, 03:08 PM
rachelinnys rachelinnys is offline
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best bandages to keep for long term is gauze, gauze rolls and cravats. you can also keep old sheets from beds and cut them into strips. Sterilize them and place them in a baggie. Or vacuum seal.


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