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What medications should you pack in your B.O.B, or even just EDC?

6056 Views 19 Replies 14 Participants Last post by  bltjr1951
I know for the most part a pain killer, and some form of anti-diarrheal pills, and anti-allergy (unless your lucky enough to not have allergies:D:) and of course your prescription medications. Is their anything else you would want to carry? Sorry if this has been discussed before, I searched for it and couldnt find what I was looking for.
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Depends on what conditions you suffer from.

Aspirin for heart attacks, pain and inflamation
Tylenol for pain
Codeine or similar opiate. Pain killer, cough supressant, antidiarrheal.

Of course it is important to know when to use or not use these. Aspirin is a bad choice if you are bleeding, have trouble clotting, have stomach problems or are under 16. Opiates are a bad choice if you have a concussion. Tylenol is bad if you have liver impairment. All three have risks for overdose and oddly Tylenol is the most easy to overdose on but you won't notice it right away. It can damage the liver at levels not a lot higher than the maximum recommended.

They are synergistic in effect. Combining them is more effective than the use of them separately would suggest. That's why you see a lot of combination pain killers, like Vicodin. Caffeine is a pain killer for a very specific kind of pain, that which is caused by dilation of capillaries. An example is migraine.
(Hit the done button by accident on the last post.)

There is a wide choice among antihistamines. We have those that keep put you asleep (like Benedryl) and those that don't (like Allegra). The sleepy ones work faster, the nonsleeepy ones last longer. Then there are also decongestants like Pseudaphed which wake you up. PseudoEpehdrine HCl is a semi controlled drug today because it can be used as a precursor to speed. The natural substance Ephedrine is regulated because too much and a weak man can have a heart attack from it.

Decongestants and antihistamines can seem similar because they both make breathing easier but they work from completely different mechanisms. Antihistamines regulate an aspect of the immune system (histamines) while decongestants cause vasoconstriction and raise blood pressure by simulating adrenaline.

There is a special class of antihstamines used as anti-emetics. They fight nausea and vertigo. Drammamine puts you to sleep and Meclazine does not. I find Drammamine more effective but YMMV. Drammamine is harder to buy because some people abuse it for the dopey feeling it gives.

Immodium fights the poops. Doesn't grog you out like opiates do.

Read the label on any OTC med carefully. Pseudaphed and Drammamine are brand names, not chemical names. Because of the controls on the good stuff you will see things like
Caveat emptor.

I like to include a couple of Zantacs and Tums to cut down on possible heartburn. I also include a couple of prescription muscle relaxants. Aged and decrepit people like me are a bit more prone to muscle spasm of the back. I toss in a supply of Keflex as an antibiotic in case I am injured and have to wait in place for rescue. A two day supply of each medication is stored in a little one by one inch ziploc with a label. Prescription numbers and instructions are on a separate sheet. The whole thing is less than an ounce and fits in an Altoid tin.
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You got that right. Acetaminophen and caffeine works far better than you would expect if you just added the separate effects of the drugs together. This is called synergy where the whole is more effective than the sum of the parts. Each drug attacks pain thru a different chemical pathway.

Tylenol is the brand name for Acetaminophen (generic name). Just like Drammimine and Pseudaphed and Bendryl are also brand names, not the generic name or the scientific name. Aspirin is also a brand name belonging to Bayer but it has been around so long I think they lost the copyright on it. The generic name is Acetylsalicylic Acid.

Since Tylenol is a brand name and not a chemical name you will see it slapped on products that have nothing to do with Acetaminophen. Same thing applies for many other brand names. Always read your ingredient labels. Caveat emptor.
Topical ointments and creams are also very useful. Triple antibiotic ointment (generic for Neosporin) is a near must for dressing any open wound to reduce the chances of infection. Hyrocortisone cream is great for treating allergic skin reactions. The ointment is mostly for use on mucous membranes or skin that will be covered with a bandage. Benedryl also comes in cream form. Bunch of different surface anesthetics like xylocaine and lidocaine come in cream form while benzocaine is used as a spray on (Solarcaine) for sunburn.

Notice all the "_____caine" names? (also Novocaine, procaine and others.) That's because the entire family of such drugs are surface anesthetics. Cocaine is the best one of all and it used in plastic surgery and optical surgery but is tightly controlled because of the psychotropic effects of high dosages.

Sometimes plain old Vaseline is what you need. I don't consider sun screen, lip balm, ammonia inhalants, electrolyte tabs, Quickclot, Newskin, alcohol wipes and Betadine (povidone-iodine) swaps to be 'medication' but at least some of them should have a place in your kit.

Since my kit is designed for an emergency of 2-3 days until i get rescued or get home, I like to use the little packets like the kind you find in commercial first aid kits. I get mine thru REI but there are lots of first aid kit restocking retailers out there. Typically one packet is enough for 1-3 applications, depending on how big the injury is and contains a tiny fraction of an ounce. This allows a large assortment of topicals with minimal bulk and weight.
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