Summer brings its own brand of fun -- and injuries. Here's what doctors say families should carry to be prepared:
Sunscreen. Use brands with an SPF of at least 15 that blocks UVA and UVB rays.
acetaminophen or ibuprofen, including Tylenol, Advil or Motrin, can reduce pain.
Treatment for bug bites ... Calamine lotion or hydrocortisone creams, as well as an antihistamine such as Benadryl, help reduce itching and swelling.
... and stings. Cold compresses can soothe bee and wasp stings, as can a paste of baking soda and water. If you know you're very allergic, ask your doctor about a portable injection that can ward off serious complications.
Tweezers for ticks. To remove ticks, grasp them as close to the skin as possible and gently pull them straight out.
Jellyfish balms. Baking soda mixed with salt water is a quick treatment for stings. Vinegar also may help. Use a sharp surface such as the edge of a credit card to scrape out all the stingers first.
Ear drops. Products such as Aqua Ear or Swim Ear, sold without a prescription, can help prevent the infection swimmer's ear (but talk to your doctor first, especially if you're prone to the problem). The drops are meant for use whenever you feel water trapped in your ear canal.
Eye drops. They can fight redness and stinging from chlorine-filled pools. But don't overuse them -- that can make the problem worse.
Water. Take it everywhere. Consider buying a water bottle for each family member.
Bandages and gauze. Keep a stash in your car, along with antibacterial ointment.
-- Alison Johnson, special to Tribune Newspapers