Crohn’s Disease Essentials and Emergency Kits

First shared with IBD News, I keep items in case of emergencies and essentials I think I need as an IBD patient and Crohn’s disease warrior. 

Crohn's Disease Essentials and Emergency Kits

If you’re like me and suffer from Crohn’s disease or IBD, you know you have to be prepared for a number of things that could happen. That’s why having a Crohn’s disease essentials kit and an emergency kit is a smart thing to do. From packing in case of accidents to packing the essentials, there are quite a few things that Crohn’s disease patients may want to take with them wherever they go. I have two. But really, I have a bin of items I keep. I keep a Crohn’s disease essentials kit that I carry with me and another Crohn’s disease emergency kit in my car. A number of things I keep just in case can include anything from candy to extra clothing, from gloves to medical masks, blankets, and chapstick — I prepare for anything.

I have two. But really, I have a bin of items I keep. I have a Crohn’s disease essentials kit that I carry with me and another Crohn’s disease emergency kit in my car. Things I keep just in case include anything from candy to extra clothing, from gloves to medical masks, and from blankets to chapstick — I prepare for anything.

So, I have compiled a list of items I think are necessary to bring. Some fit for a Crohn’s patient and others are just items I believe we should all keep.

Crohn's Disease Essentials and Emergency Kits
Crohn’s disease essentials and emergency kits. (Photo by Mary Horsley)

Crohn’s emergency kit

*Restroom access card: the “I can’t wait” card from CCFA
*Sanitizer
*Baby wipes and cleansing lotion
*Extra clothes
*Pads or adult diapers
*Gloves
*Ziplock bag, plastic bags
*Stool collection kit
*Medication with a list of all current meds — preferably with the doctor’s office information listed
*Medical mask
*Migraine glasses
*Perfume and bathroom spray

Crohn's Disease Essentials and Emergency Kits
(Photo by Mary Horsley)

Crohn’s essential kit

*Restroom access card: the “I can’t wait” card from CCFA
*Baby wipes and cleansing lotion
*Sanitizer
*Extra clothes
*Pads or adult diapers
*Gloves
*Ziplock bag, plastic bags
*Medication with list of all current meds — preferably with the doctor’s office information listed
*Medical mask
*Migraine glasses
*Perfume and bathroom spray
*Tylenol – No NSAIDs for us!
*Blanket, jacket, scarf
*Braces or splints for joint pain
*Tissues
*Bottled water
*Phone charger, headphones, battery pack

Also important are a sweater, a change of scrubs for work, a blanket, and scarves. I keep all of these because I am always cold, and a new change of clothing may be necessary when suffering from accidents like I do. As a bonus, my scarf can also be used as a face mask or a headband when needed. I bring my own personal blog business cards and stickers in case I ever get into a conversation about IBD or my journey, so that I can share with others.

I ordered a bathroom access card from CrohnsandColitis.com, which notes that I have Crohn’s and using the restroom is crucial and time sensitive. There is a law in some states, Ally’s Law, that allows patients to use even the employee restroom when necessary. The Restroom Access Act allows IBD patients to use public or private facilities and even fines those who refuse to allow it.

Crohn's Disease Essentials and Emergency Kits
(Photo by Mary Horsley)

Sanitizer, baby wipes, gloves, pads or adult diapers, and your medication with a list of all meds and doctor information may be some of the most crucial items needed. Sometimes accidents happen, and being prepared takes away some of the added stress. Remember ziplock bags or plastic bags to hold the soiled items.

I even keep a stool collection kit that I can drop off at my doctor’s office, if necessary. I often have bleeding, so I try to catch my bad days and give my GI a call to tell her I am bringing her a gift of sorts, pardon my humor. I also keep bathroom spray or perfumes in my bag, because sometimes it is not pleasant, and one more embarrassment is unneeded. I even was sent some cleansing sanitizing lotion to use when my bottom is sore or when I run out of baby wipes.

With our already weakened immune system, maintaining clean hands is not the only necessity. I bring a medical mask with me in case I have to stop by the doctor’s office or hospital. This helps prevent the germs from other patients being passed to me. Getting sick is a big no-no. I also suffer from migraines, so I try to bring my glasses to help with the bright lights and any other light-related auras. I also keep a bottle of water, tissues and toilet paper, and my hand braces when they are not in the wash. My joints ache with my Crohn’s disease, especially my hands and thumbs. I try to prepare for anything, really.

Crohn's Disease Essentials and Emergency Kits
(Photo by Mary Horsley)

Other items

First aid kit
What’s inside the kit:
*Safety pins
*Sterile gauze pads
*Single-use cold compress
*CPR face mask
*Emergency blanket
*First aid tape
*Glow stick
*Metal tweezers
*Disposable poncho
*Sterile razor blades, razor
*Vinyl disposable gloves
*Bandages
*Sanitary prep pads
*Antibacterial ointment
*Antiseptic cleansing wipes
*Butterfly closure strips
*Cotton swabs

Also:
*Phone charger, headphones, battery pack
*Hair ties
*Candy
*Lotion — dry hands sanitizer
*Chapstick
*Scissors
*Blood pressure kit

Crohn's Disease Essentials and Emergency Kits
(Photo by Mary Horsley)

I also keep a hodgepodge of other items in my emergency kit, too. A headlamp or flashlight, towels, a notepad, and pens. I keep a blood pressure cuff and stethoscope kit, as well. In my opinion, everyone should keep a first aid kit with them in their vehicle. Mine was a pre-made and ordered kit, but it would easy enough to make your own.

I always make sure to pack a spare charger, battery pack, and my headphones in case I need or want them. For my infusions, they are essential. When I get nauseated, I like to have extra hair ties to keep my hair out of the way. I bring candy, usually a candy cane or sucker, but I know ginger can help nausea, too. My hands tend to get dry from all of the hand sanitizing and wearing gloves, so lotion can help prevent my cuticles from cracking or my hands from suffering. I always pack extra chapstick, and things like scissors and Q-tips get thrown into my bag, too.

I find that I really can’t be too prepared. Are there any items that you cannot live without? Any items that help you manage your IBD? Is there anything I should add to my own personal Crohn’s kit?

My experiences may be different than yours, but you never can be too prepared for what could happen with Crohn’s — because, for me, It Could Be Worse.

 ***

Note: IBD News Today is strictly a news and information website about the disease. It does not provide medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. This content is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of your physician or another qualified health provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition. Never disregard professional medical advice or delay in seeking it because of something you have read on this website. The opinions expressed in this column are not those of IBD News Today, or its parent company, BioNews Services, and are intended to spark discussion about issues pertaining to IBD. 

Advertisements

2 Comments Add yours

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s