Where Men Can Become Better Gentlemen

The Perfect Dopp Kit

Medicine & Health Care Contents

Emergency Medical ID

Especially when you are traveling, and perhaps far from home, it is a good idea to carry something to identify you, to help emergency services should you be involved in an unfortunate event. If you do this it is worthwhile including any medical issues you may have (epilepsy, diabetes etc.), your blood group and any known allergies. This information might also include 1 or 2 ICE (In Case of Emergency) contact numbers. This could take the form of a card in your wallet or other suitable place.

However, a very effect method of providing this information is to wear medical ID jewelery e.g. bracelet, watch or pendent. For the widest array of medical ID choices and styles check out Sticky Jewelery or Fiddledee ID’s. Sometimes though, you just can’t beat a classic and the rugged original infamous military style “Dog Tag”, which have served as medical ID since the 1900’s, is a great solution.

Ready-Made First Aid Kit

A simple approach to your medicinal requirements is to add a ready-made first aid kit to your Dopp Kit, and then modify it to include additional items relevant to you specific needs. We’ve picked out some of the smallest and best equipped ones for your consideration.

Dental Emergency Kit

Dental problems when traveling can be very painful and debilitating but are not often considered, and equipment rarely included with first aid kits. An additional Dental Emergency Kit can be very useful if you lose a filling or crown, dislodge/chip or even lose a tooth. Plus it can provide temporary help with other dental issues including general tooth/gum pain relief, until professional treatment can be administered.

Empty First Aid Bags

The ready-made first aid kits have their place and time. However, some people have a specific list of items they like to take with them, to best meet their needs rather than a “universal” option. If this is true for you, a good idea is to purchase an empty bag and then fill it with your own items to meet your unique needs and requirements. The First Aid Survival Wrap by Xidaje is a small and inexpensive choice, while the Voodoo Tactical MOLLE Pouch is larger with greater versatility, for slightly more extensive needs.

Specific Items

Most of the following items can generally be purchasing easily and locally, so why would you pack these in a first aid/Dopp kit? Experience tells us if you pack them you’ll never need them but don’t pack them and it will be late at night (when all shops are closed) or you’ll be in a remote place when you’ll need them! The following is our suggested list of items to consider including.

Antacid/Heartburn/Anti-Diarrhoea Tablets

Outside your own domicile, you expose yourself to a different diet that may upset your digestive system. Our suggestions include a Zantac (25 in individual 1 tablet pouches), Pepto Bismol (25 pouches with 2 tablets in each) and Imodium Instants.

Antihistamine Cream & Allergy Tablets

The cream is an invaluable item to your medicine kit: for bites, stings, or any form of skin irritation. This soothes the area concerned, giving instant relief - our suggestion is one by Ivarest - we rarely leave home without it, especially in summer! If you are prone to allergy reactions then also pack some tablets to combat the sniffling nose and all the other symptoms that come with it, our recommendation is Benadryl Allergy Relief (30 individual pouches with 2 tablets in each one).

Band Aid/Plasters

A standard in all first aid kits to help stop bleeding and prevent infection of any small wounds. They are also useful for covering tender areas (e.g. blisters) and minimize rubbing from bag straps, tight footwear etc. Although “rough and ready” they can also be used to make temporary repairs (e.g. reattaching arms to broken spectacles/sunglasses etc.).

Blister Care

Most trips can involve a higher level of walking than you may normally experience so be prepared. One of the best products is produced by Compeed, try them out and be prepared to marvel at how great they really are – you will wonder how you ever managed without them!

Cold Medicine

Include any cold remedy that you find effective. Also include throat lozenges and a decongestant, particularly if you suffer from blocked passages including sinuses (e.g. Sudafed).

Gold Bond

An excellent brand product by Chattem's of Chattanooga, Tennessee. It is a medicated powder for skin irritation and is used (originally by sportsmen) to curb moisture, control odor, and soothe minor skin irritation, notably "jock itch". In essence this is a talc that has abilities to keep things nice and cool (especially when applied to the groin area). Not only can it be applied to hot spots to keep things comfortable, it is a marvel against foot odor. Sprinkle a little in your socks and shoes each morning to keep feet cool and fresh – particularly useful during long travels and flights. Comes in powder, spray and glide dispenser.

Insect Repellent

Not just for hot climates but equally useful when around water.  Repel 100 has 100% DEET and
Repel 94107 is an alternative, DEET-free product with Lemon Eucalyptus

Please note: 100% DEET products are strongly recommended for traveling in malarial regions however, they can be quite destructive with jewellery and synthetic products e.g. nylon clothing (not to mention its impact on the environment).

For a real all-rounder use Bullfrog Mosquito Coast Sunblock (SPF30) & DEET-free Insect Repellant combination.

If sprays and lotions seem too much, try using patches as many people swear by them. However, they may not be effective for everyone and you may develop a strange odor! We've picked out 3 brands that seem equaly effective: Don't Bite Me; Agraco; and The Bug Patch.

Another alternative is to use a personal fan style electrical item that clips to your belt/waistband. These are not totally effective but do provide a reasonable second line of defence against insect bites, especially when you are stationary. There are relatively inexpensive ones on the market but most last for only a short time (both inserts and batteries run out quickly). The best we have found is the organic (DEET-free) 120-Hour Personal Mosquito Repeller available from Hammacher for $25 (plus $5 per replacement insert).

Motion/Travel Sickness & Jetlag Tablets

If motion sickness is something you may suffer with, then Dramamine can work well – as can crystallized ginger. There are also anti-jet lag tablets available and while not universally effective you might like to give them a try if jetlag is a problem, we have heard the ones by JetZone have a good success rate.

Pain Relief Tablets

You many never suffer with a headache but omit them and you’ll get one, or a fellow travel companion will need them, missing an ideal opportunity to be a “Knight in shining armor!” We've listed several different types here as some are more effective against different types of pain. We have also included several dispensing options for each one e.g. small tubes (with 10-12 tablets in) or individually wrapped pouches (with 1 or 2 tablets in).

Prescription Medication

If you need it, you need it, so take it with you. In general it is always a good idea to ensure you have several weeks supply of regular medicines at home (to prevent urgent replenishment). Just ensure you have a small supply added to your Dopp kit, the amount depending on your frequency and duration of your normal trips. We would suggest at least 2-7 days supply and kept them in a suitable pill organizer. Don’t forget to rotate them with fresh medication every 3-6 months, if not used regularly.

If you take a medication, which needs to be kept cool (e.g. insulin) use a suitable cool pack and preferably one specifically designed for the task. We haven’t had personal need to use the ones listed here so any feedback or further suggestions from readers is very much appreciated. The one by Medicool is small and keeps items cold for up to 12 hours while the one by Insulpak is larger, keeps items cold for up to 30 hours and has a built in electronic temperature display.


Supplements such as vitamins etc. should ideally be treated in the same way as prescription medication e.g. small quantity kept in your Dopp kit, in a pill organizer.

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