Some items that most preppers ignore
Most of what we carry and stock as preppers revolve around two things, food stuffs (seed vaults, canning etc) and defense (Medical supplies, weapons, ammo etc). As a member of the Us Military, we learned early on about a third subset of items that any place should be stocked up on, the “sniffle” gear.
In 2003 my marine battalion engaged in some of the worst fighting the marines has seen since Hue City in 1968. We spent months in the field, no showers, no fresh socks, minimal fresh water, and we were having to wear a MOPP suit (Chemical/Biological protective oversuit) the entire time. Here is a small concise list of items that saved quite a few members of my unit from a variety of ailments.
1) Gold Bond foot powder or similar- Our feet in Iraq were our lives. The majority of us had severe foot problems when we returned to the states, everything from fungal infections to immersion foot were common problems. A good quality foot powder worked wonders to help slow down and prevent further foot issues when in country. This is a must, if you can move, you can’t fight. A good rub down with foot powder works wonders, and a small shot into your boots will help “decontaminate” them.It works wonders on your “nether-regions” to prevent chaffing and fungal issues, just don’t use the Blue can foot powder. You will regret it, take my word on it. Make sure to air out your bare feet in the sun every day. The UV light will help dry your feet, and the fresh air will help stem the growth of harmful fungi and bacteria.
2) Tampons and maxi pads- Our Gunny made every one of us keep a few tampons and pads in our kit. The reasoning behind this- instant bullet wound/trauma packing/bandage. They are sterile enough to use for most medical purposes, absorb LARGE amounts of blood, sealed in plastic wrap, and the tampons even have their own plastic applicator. We were trained to locate the wound (in case of GSW’s, locate the entrance and exit wounds) and apply direct pressure using adhesive tape (in our case it was 100mph tape or electrical tape) over the maxi-pad. Works like a field bandage, but is lighter and more convenient. For the GSW’s, we would place a tampon in the entrance and exit wound, place a maxi pad apply direct pressure over the wounds to staunch the blood flow. This was used as a field expedient method of blood loss control, after which we medevac’d our marine to the rear for further treatment. Its not the best method by far, but is a method that works when the SHTF.
3) Baby wipes- This is the infantryman’s best friend! When fresh water and soap are scarce, a baby wipe bath feels fantastic. The good thing about baby wipes is the fact that they will stay moist FOREVER as long as the container they are in is sealed. They are cheap (dollar stores carry boxes of them) and they usually have a fresh scent. Its not as good as a shower or bath, but they will help keep you somewhat sanitary, and keeping clean will keep your morale up in a bad situation. In Iraq, we would take a “baby-wipe shower” whenever we had the chance to.
4) And finally, one of the most used items (not in the desert, but in the woods/swamps of Lejeune NC) TOBASCO SAUCE!- Besides its obvious uses (making MRE’s more edible by actually adding some flavor) Tabasco sauce had a very strange other use. Bug repellent/itch stopper! Down in Camp Lejeune we had severe problems with Chiggers (IE- Red bugs/no-see-ums). Working in the brush, the bugs would imbed in our legs and leave you miserable from itching for days. A quick light rub down on your legs with tobacco sauce works wonders. It stops any itching that is occurring at that time, and prevents other chiggers/fleas from biting. Doesn’t take a lot, just a small squirt in your hands, rub on the legs. It feels like Icy-hot when you first put it on, as it gets your skin a bit warm from the capsaicin, but it fades rapidly, along with the odor. Usually protects all day.
By no means is this a complete list, but rather a few items and a few alternate uses for some items you might already have stocked.