72 Hour Kit Ideas Week #12: Medicines

Welcome!Week #12 in a step by step 72 hour kit series. Makes building a robust, personalized 72 hour kit affordable and do-able!

Welcome to week #12 in the “72 Hour Kit Ideas: A week by week approach” series.

This series is all about making it simple and do-able to get a 72 hour kit put together for you and your family.

Creating such a kit can be overwhelming and financially difficult to do all at once. But through this series, I’ve broken it down for you into 26 small steps! You can see all the steps here. Just take one small baby step each week and in 6 months you will have a well stocked, personalized kit!

You can even go through the series a few times over a year or two adding just the most basic supplies the first six months and then a few more “extra” supplies each time you cycle through it again.

Want even more help?Build a robust, personalized 72 hour kit one week at a time over 26 weeks

This series is also available as an e-book. Purchasing the e-book gives you a few additional benefits over just reading the free series:

  • Additional details and tips
  • The ability to print the entire book!
  • Pictures of my own kit showing just how I pack each week.
Download “Your Own 72 Hour Kit Plan” E-Book Now!

* Some links in this post are affiliate links meaning, at no additional cost to you, I may get a small commission if you make a purchase. Some links (those to Thrive Life) actually provide you with a discounted price. Thanks for your support in this way!

Last Week

I hope you were able to add to the first aid supplies in your kit last week.

Week #12: Medicine

Even if you don’t take daily prescription meds, there are some “meds” you may consider including in your kit. Remember that “illnesses” that may seem small during everyday life (such as a headache or a cold) will be far more difficult to deal with in a disaster situation.

You will want to be your best self in every way possible, especially if you are a parent! This week, add medicines you feel are important for your family to your kit.

While many meds are important, prescription meds can be essential and life sustaining. If there are meds you must take on a regular basis be sure you have a supply of them in your kit.  This post: The Ultimate Guide to Prescription Meds for Self-Reliant Families from Lesslie (a Nurse and the Busy B Homemaker) is the absolute BEST I’ve ever seen on the topic of stocking prescription meds.  Go read it!

Ideas / Options:

Other than prescription meds that you already know you need, consider the list below as you decide what to keep in your kit for your family. You may consider putting a 3 day supply of some meds in a small zip pouch (like the ones you can find at craft stores) with a label to save on space!

  • Infant / children’s pain relief (with appropriate dropper if needed)
  • Children’s Benadryl (for allergic reactions)
  • Cold Meds
  • Allergy Meds / Antihistamines
  • Hydro-cortisone
  • Antacid tablets
  • Various types of pain relief (including Midol if you use / need it)
  • Anti-diarrhea meds and Laxatives (when under severe stress the digestive system doesn’t always function so well!)
  • Syrup of Ipecac OR Activated Charcoal (to induce vomiting from poisoning) DO NOT use both. I prefer Activated Charcoal
  • High blood pressure meds (Your blood pressure will be higher during times of stress. If you have high blood pressure, include some!)
  • Insulin if necessary
  • Inhaler / asthma meds
  • Birth Control
  • Cranberry Pills (for urinary tract infections)
  • Ear Drops
  • Essential Oils (if you know how to use them)
  • An Epi-Pen (if someone in your family needs one)
  • Copies of eyeglass or contact prescriptions

What we have done in our family:

We have most of what is listed above. We do not need any prescription meds, blood pressure meds or insulin / asthma meds. We do not have a laxative or ear drops. I would like to get some cranberry pills, but have not yet.

How About You? /

Leave me a comment and tell me what you will be adding to your kit. Why? How are you going to “beef up” the supplies in your basic kit?

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Week #11: First Aid Week #13: Personal Care & Hygiene Week #1: Packaging Your Kit Series Into: Survival Kit Series, A Week by Week Approach
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Becky is a wildlife enthusiast and pet and livestock care expert with a diploma in canine nutrition. With over a decade of experience in animal welfare, Becky lends her expertise to Simple Family Preparedness through insightful info about pets, livestock, bee keeping, and the practicalities of homesteading.

115 thoughts on “72 Hour Kit Ideas Week #12: Medicines”

  1. Is there supposed to be a direct link to the “The Ultimate Guide to Prescription Meds for Self-Reliant Families” page? If so, it’s not working.

  2. I just wanted to comment on your suggestion of syrup of ipecac and activated charcoal. Syrup of Ipecac can be used to induce vomiting – although not all toxins / poisons should come back up as they can cause more damage. Activated charcoal is used to bind toxins / poisons – although not all substances are bound to activated charcoal. So they actually serve different, but related purposes. They typically are not used at the same time, but you may be instructed by your doctor or poison control to induce vomiting first and then administer activated charcoal. I believe, but am not sure so you should check with a medical professional, that for toxin binding you need to use the powder (and add water to make a suspension), not the capsules.

  3. I have the usual Tylenol, ibuprofen and Exedrin packed. It sounds like pain med overkill, but they all have their own unique purpose. I have other meds for stomach upset, allergies and itching too. I would also suggest adding eye wash and/or eye drops. Tornados and earthquakes are more likely to happen in my area and I can imagine the air would be dusty and could cause eye irritation. I need to get ear drops and cranberry pills. I would also like to learn more about essential oils so I can add them to my pack. I get my prescriptions by mail order and my doctor is nice enough to give me samples when I am there, so I usually have some extra. I keep them all in a bag that is easy to grab if we have to leave. I also keep some of the sample packs in the bag I keep in my car in case I am away from home and can’t get back.

    • I’ve been reading your posts and wanted to comment on essential oils since many are adding them but there have been several mentions about not knowing how to use herbal alternatives.

      Essential oils are the highly concentrated essence of plants and flowers and should be used with caution. Also they should never be used without a carrier oil because they can cause burning and irritation. A carrier oil can be olive oil, coconut oil or any of the skin oils such as jojoba, grapesee, or almond. One or two drops of essential oil to roughly one teaspoon carrier oil. Keep away from eyes and do not ever swallow essential oils.

      The one oil that can be used neat (meaning “straight on the skin”) is lavender.

      Echinacea tincture is an excellent remedy for flu and colds, and infections. Explore the use of herbal tinctures for medicinal needs. They will keep for years and eliminate the need for rotating.

      • Thank you Connie! I am still learning a lot about essential oils, but I do know they should be used with caution. Since my knowledge is less than complete and I don’t want to lead anyone astray, I don’t post on them very often. However, one of my teammates here on this site, Brigette, does know a lot about them and posts about them periodically. You can read all of her post here:


  4. What we’ve done in the recent-past, and what I suggest to fellow cold/allergy sufferers, is to get an extra box of sudafed (or the generic equivalent), when you get some. You’re limited on how much you can get per-month, so it’s also good to stock up on off-months.

    Why stock up? Because the alternative — phenylephrine — has been shown to be as effective, or even less-effective, than placebo. It’s useless.

  5. I found this series on pinterest today and you’ve inspi red me to really get to work on a dedicated emergency kit for my family. We have a lot of these things but they aren’t pulled together!

  6. I have a general medical kit with basic medications. I forgot about putting an old pair of prescription glasses. This would come in very handy.

  7. Just discovered your blog as I was rotating our 72 hr kits for hurricane season – didn’t find it time to stop the Jolly Ranchers from melting all over our food though. 🙂 You have some great ideas! As far as medications are concerned, I have a grab and go list attached to my bag that makes sure my daughter’s medication is one of the first things to grab as we’re leaving. Again, thanks for the ideas!

  8. I am rotating the meds I put in the last time around. Just to make sure we use up the older ones and we don’t have expired stuff in our packs. Thanks for the great info!!

    • Most of the time you can fill it a few days early….do that every month for a while and you will have a stock. Also, the link I mentioned may help!

  9. This time around I am changing my meds to mostly Essential Oils and Herbal medicines. I have been taking courses through Vintage Remedies and Aromahead to learn how to use EO’s and herbs responsibly, safely, correctly and in place of OTC meds. I am putting together small kits of EOs along with carrier oils to dilute to the proper dilution for use and some extra vials for mixing. I am switching my medicine cabinet at home over to a more natural medicine cabinet and as I find things that work well for us, I am replacing OTC meds there so I am mirroring that in my kits.

    BTW, I have found that contact cases work great to hold small amounts of balms or ointments and even for mixing in a pinch and they don’t take up a lot of space in my kits! 🙂

  10. I have finally added some burn cream and some bee sting meds to numb the pain. I think we are pretty well set in the meds department. I think I will go through and make sure we have enough cold meds for the little ones for the Winter time.

  11. I think I will add some Lavender essential oil to my kit. We find it helps soothe nerves and headaches. I really like the idea of the little plastic bags. They will be less bulky than the pill bottles I’ve been using.

  12. We have all of the OTC meds covered as well as prescription meds. We need to add a copy of my eyeglass prescription and essential oils.

  13. I need to add activated charcoal and basic cold meds to our packs. I already have all of our prescription meds in our personal packs, as my boys are old enough to administer their own. I keep my extra insulin in a grab bag in the fridge, so it’s ready to go at a moments notice.

  14. I have recently been introduced to essential oils and medicinal plants as an alternative to traditional OTC medications that you’d buy at the store. I would include small vials of EO’s and a card of local plants to be used for medicinal purposes in case you find yourself w/o the OTC. This, of course, is after trying out the various alternatives to make sure they do work well for their intended purpose. I’d hate to rely solely on something w/o making sure it works for me first!


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