The definition of a survivalist tends to vary somewhat. Some would call a survivalist a person that believes a government or society will fail and prepares for their own personal survival needs accordingly. Others more broadly state that a survivalist is merely a person who’s sole ambition is to survive in the face of great difficulty. With either definition, the concept of surviving is a common thread. Survivalists will need a great number of things for prolonged survival, the most important being a specific number of first aid items.
A couple of adhesive bandages and a tube of antibiotic ointment isn’t going to do the trick for survival first aid. Survivalists will need many items in the event of minor to severe wounds. Cleaning wounds and sterilizing materials to prevent infection is very important. For this reason, rubbing alcohol must be an important supply item. A needle and thread will also come in handy for the possibility of stitching-up certain types of wounds. Surgical thread is preferred, but in the event of survival, you use what’s available.
Iodine tablets can be added to water to make it suitable for drinking. Water has to be the first thing a person thinks about in survival mode as the body will begin to shut down after just a few days of dehydration. Food is not as much of a concern as water, since the human body can survive for several days without food. But to keep strength while in survival mode, if and only if there is plenty of water, having a few days worth of meal rations on hand is helpful. Non-perishable food such as the military MRE (Meals Ready to Eat)are preferable for survivalists.
Survivalists will most likely be concerned with safety as well. Possibly due to natural surroundings or a criminal element. Either way, many survivalists will want to keep a gun as part of their first aid and immediate needs materials. Just a small gun will be enough for personal protection, along with 9mm ammo rounds. This is designed as precautionary, but also can help provide an auditory signal for people to find you.
When thinking of first aid, lots of sterile dressings and gauze should also be included, as well as adhesive bandages of various sizes. If you are allergic to certain types of plants or insects, include one or two Epi Pens, as well as some antibiotic cream or ointment. A lighter, as well as a box of matches should also be included.
Starting a fire is important for a variety of reasons. It can signal people to your location, but can also help in purifying water, cooking food and improving your general morale. Indeed, it’s important even when in survival mode to try to keep your spirits high. A campfire is comforting and provides warmth and light in the evening.
A flare gun is another important article for a survivalist. A flare gun will alert any passerby to your location with a brilliant ball of light into the sky. Use the flare gun wisely and shoot it into as clear of an opening as possible, getting as high as you can before you shoot. In addition, staying dry in the event of wet weather is also important. Avoid personal illness by staying dry and warm. Having a tarp and a length of rope, can ensure that you will stay dry even on a very rainy day.
These suggestions are just a few of the items you’ll need for both first aid and general survival in an emergency situation. Don’t forget that the most important thing to have is your brain and a little bit of quick thinking. Anyone is capable of surviving, but it requires thought and intense concentration, along with a willingness to live!
Lee Flynn is from the Wasatch Mountains near Salt Lake City, UT. After Lee spent years preparing himself, his home and his family, he decided he had to do more. In his free time, Lee helps educate those who want to do the same. Through small local workshops and articles, Lee trains and teaches others on home preparation, food storage techniques, wilderness survival and self reliance. After obtaining a bachelors degree from the University of Utah, Lee moved to the Salt Lake Valley where he now lives with his wife and daughter.