natural remedies for camping first aid

5 Awesome Natural Remedies For Your Camping First Aid Kit

First aid kits are a must for camping, but I was inspired to write this post when I realized the remedies I use most are the ones I added to the kit myself.

These are natural, herbal remedies my family has depended on for years. They aren’t strictly for camping, but being out in the elements has provided many opportunities to use them.

From bug bites to boo-boos to the common cold, these are the tried-and-true lifesavers that have kept us happy, healthy campers.

1. Tea tree oil

A little bottle of this AMAZING oil treats bug bites, scabby knees, cuts, acne breakouts, dandruff, body odor, and the list goes on.

It’s basically nature’s antibacterial salve.

Except it works better than an antibacterial salve. 🙂

I forgot to mention that it immediately kills lice and gives powerful foot fungus a really good fight.

Rubbing a couple drops of this powerful oil on whatever ails you jumpstarts your healing process.

tea tree oil for camping first aid
Photo credit: Fiora Naturals

Our whole family has benefitted from this powerful natural remedy.

It has worked great on bug bites (it reduces swelling and itch) and wounds big and small. It has healed many of my son’s boo-boos and got rid of the persistent toenail fungus I had a few years back. Tea tree oil was the only thing that helped my mom’s leg heal after she had a mole removed.

You just need a couple drops when you use it. A small one-ounce bottle should get you through at least one camping season. Slip it in your camping first aid kit. A dab will do ya!

Tea tree oil is inexpensive, and you should look for 100 percent pure-grade tea tree oil like this one that comes in a just right-sized bottle.

2. Arnica

kayaking in the poconos
My son in our kayak on Tobyhanna Lake

I remember the time we rented kayaks and paddled our way around a beautiful lake while camping in the Poconos.

Our family typically canoes, and I was thinking how lovely it was to be so close to the water in our little kayak.

I definitely wasn’t thinking about the nine major muscles, from my back down to my belly, that I was using as we cruised along the water.

Until I woke up the next morning. 😉

Arnica to the rescue!

Arnica is my go-to for injuries that cause pain.

I use it for bruises, sore muscles, and stiff joints.

I discovered this plant-derived remedy when I broke my ankle ice skating with my son’s class. As I hobbled off the ice and unlaced my skates, a mom came to my aid with a small tube of arnica.

I didn’t know what it was, but as she rubbed a bit on my throbbing ankle, it felt soothing.

Not realizing my ankle was broken, I actually laced up my skates and went back on the ice.

Which was really stupid!

Arnica helped but, yeah, it didn’t put my bone back together. I got back off the ice and put my foot up.

I continued to use arnica to bring down the swelling and bruising after I got home and was sold on its powers. We’ve had it in our camper, and medicine cabinet, ever since.

3. Wild oregano oil

Oregano oil is a nasty-smelling, awful tasting wonder substance.

I’ve read that it’s actually stronger than penicillin.

Folks, this stuff is no joke.

I take it as soon as possible when I feel like I’m coming down with something.

And, to be honest, I have to gag it down.

It tastes awful. I imagine cod liver oil would be more pleasing to my palette.

But I suffer through because nine of out ten times, oregano oil will stop illness in its tracks.

I’m not sure how or why.

But it does. And, as disgusting as it is, I have turned on a lot of people to its powers.

I always tell them to buy 100 percent wild oregano oil, because that’s what I was told by the wise woman who turned me onto it. It’s not cheap, but a little bit goes a long way.

Oregano oil is sold in capsule form as well as the oil that you take with a dropper. But!

To put up your best fight against the bug in your body, you have to use the oil, not the capsule. Sorry! 😔

Specifically, you need to get wild oregano with a high percentage of carvacrol. That’s the substance that gives oregano oil is germ blasting power. I recommend this one. It’s the good stuff with over 85 percent of carvacrol.

Here’s how I use it:

When I feel the first signs of sickness, I fill up the dropper, tip my head back and squeeze the oil straight into my mouth, trying to hold my nose as I swallow. On the first day, I do this twice. On the next day, usually just once, unless I’m still feeling pretty lousy. On the third through sixth days, I use about a quarter of a dropper once a day.

A reader brought to my attention that people with certain health conditions should be aware that some essential oils may cause reactions. If you’re unsure, best to research before use.

By the way, in addition to fighting infection in your body, carvacrol has been proven to help fight certain cancers.

Mother nature is sure amazing, right? Of course, as a camper, you already knew that! 😉

Want more crafty camping ideas?


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4. Aloe

This one is an oldie but a goodie that you likely already know about. But it’s easy to forget about good ole aloe vera when packing for your camping trip.

Aloe is the best herbal remedy to soothe your skin, especially if you’ve gotten too much sun, which is easy to do when camping!

I’m not as particular when it comes to the kind of aloe to buy; I just would say to get 100 percent aloe without the additives. Look for white gel, as that means no color has been added, and read the ingredients, which in this case should be just one ingredient, aloe.

I don’t think your aloe needs to be freshly cut; although this one is and promises it won’t be sticky on your skin. Customers sure do love it.

Here is a less expensive option that will be just fine.

Aloe is also great to soothe razor bumps or other rashes on your skin.

5. Lavendar mist spray

use lavender to keep your camper fresh and bug-free
Lavender provides benefits for you and your camper! Photo credit: rocknwool

This one does double duty. It’s like a healing treatment for you and your camper.

Misting the scent of lavender around your camper removes odors and acts as a bug repellant.

And you get a good night’s sleep and a relaxed mood!

Lavender will freshen up your space and your mind.

Flower power!

I also spray this lavender mist in my bags to ward off beg bugs and any other creepy crawlies that might want to hitch a ride out of town in my luggage.

By the way, here is a whole post about using natural ingredients to bug-proof your camper.

I can’t honestly say that I notice a mood boost when I spritz this around my space. But I do feel a sense of relief knowing I won’t be sharing it with any unwanted, six-legged visitors.

Do you have any awesome additions to your camping first aid kit? I’d love to hear about them! Please drop a comment below if you’d like to share. 👌


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5 thoughts on “5 Awesome Natural Remedies For Your Camping First Aid Kit”

  1. DMSO: Dimethyl Sulfoxide
    I first used this for Ankle pain relief from running. It has a multitude of health benefits.

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