If you’re in a situation with a pandemic or other survival situation and you don’t feel prepared for it, you can stock up your house with books that will help you learn the necessary skills. At the very least, you’ll have tools that teach you even if you don’t have all of the supplies you’d like to have.
Our list of books on survival should make you a solid library for any future emergency.
Five Books on Survival You Should Order Before Your Internet Goes Out
I know we have talked about books to get before – but those were more of a Sci-Fi “what if” kind of book that took a lot of possible things into consideration. They opened the doors for family conversation and helped you make a list of possible things to brush up on and learn more about.
Make sure you check out what we said were great reads for preppers…even though today, we are talking about getting more “manual” type of books for your prepper library.
OUTDOOR LIFE – The Ultimate Survival Manual – 333 SKILLS That Will Get YOU Out Alive by Simon & Schuster
If you want a reference book that helps you learn the skills you need when you need them, you can’t beat this definitive guide. It’s full of hundreds of skills, from building fires to searching for shelter to handling first aid situations. Get this book HERE.
The Survival Medicine Handbook: A guide for when help is NOT on the way by Joseph Alton
We’d all like to think we can call an ambulance or police officer to help us in times of need, but in a survival situation, you may only be able to count on yourself.
This guide is a gem that will help you treat all types of health problems from minor first aid to major chronic illness. This book won’t give you a medical degree, but it can help you to cope when there’s no expert by your side. You can get it HERE.
Edible Wild Plants: A North American Field Guide to Over 200 Natural Foods by Thomas Elias and Peter Dykeman
If you have to survive and you don’t have a garden already planted, this guide will help you to learn which plants you can eat and which ones you should stay away from. In a situation that requires you to forage for food, this field guide will give you the information you need. We found it HERE.
Gardening When It Counts: Growing Food in Hard Times (Mother Earth News Wiser Living Series) by Steve Solomon
Gardening is one of the best ways that you can learn to survive in a difficult situation. But if you have no experience gardening, it may seem very overwhelming. This book is a complete guide to gardening to help you get started. While you’re at it, you also need to begin ordering seeds as soon as you can. Check it out HERE. You also might want to check out our sister site www.TrytoGarden.com.
SurvivalNations – Surviving a Disease Pandemic (Survival-Survival Planning Book 1) by Dr. Leland Benton
All survival situations have specific needs – and a pandemic brings certain risks and needs for survival. This book explains how pandemics spread. It also tells you what you need to do to protect yourself, as well as your family, in the event of a worldwide disease outbreak. You can get it HERE.
If you liked these books on survival, check out our other ideas:
The ready-made kits that you can buy at the store or online are packed with the essential items needed during a regular first aid emergency. They are not prepared for pandemics, so you’ll need to make sure that your kit has what will come in handy during a viral health situation like bird flu or Ebola. Your pandemic survival kit has to be properly stocked.
Every first aid kit should have at least the basics when you buy it – but you can build onto that kit by adding what it’s lacking. You can find some first aid kits that are made explicitly for pandemic use – or you can just create it yourself by adding items one or two at a time.
The Best Things to Have in Your First Aid Kit During a Pandemic
You want to start by making sure your kit has at least a week’s supply of the prescription medications that every family member uses regularly. Don’t forget to add medicines to treat allergic reactions since this can spring up without warning.
In the kit, you need sterile dressings that are big enough to cover large wounds. But you also want to have a hardy supply of bandages in assorted sizes. Plus, you’ll need medical tape to put on the dressings so they’ll stay in place.
Antibiotic ointment, hydrocortisone ointment, and alcohol wipes are staples that should be in every kit. Pain medication should be the kit as well. You’ll want a thermal blanket to use to protect the injured from cold, to cover them from bad weather, or to wrap around them if they’re in shock from the injury.
Are you ready to give mouth to mouth?
You’ll want a lip protector in case you have to give CPR to someone. During a pandemic, you may not know if the person you’re treating is disease or virus-free, so you’ll need to protect yourself as you’re giving CPR.
For that same reason, you’ll need a supply of gloves, facemasks, biohazard bags, and a way to protect your clothing from being contaminated in your pandemic survival kit. There should be a pair of scissors in the kit that are strong enough to cut through clothing.
You’ll want to have a regular thermometer as well as a supply of disposable thermometers in the kit. If someone could have been exposed to the virus, they should have their own to use instead of sharing. Tweezers should also be in your kit.
You’ll need a supply of anti-diarrhea medicine to treat that ailment along with medications that can ease nausea. Don’t forget to plan for dental emergencies in your kit. Have a supply of topical gel to relieve toothaches.
You can find supplies that can help you temporarily pack a cavity to relieve pain, too. Most importantly, if you’re dealing with a disease where fevers are an issue, invest in fever reducers and items to help you keep hydration levels stable.
Hate piecing it all together yourself?
You are not alone – a lot of people would rather just buy a kit and be done with it. Our favorite place to shop? MediTac.
The best part? They have a FREE SHIPPING offer going on right now for all orders over $50.
Claims that certain supplements can cure anything and keep you healthy and wise have boosted the vitamin business to billions of dollars per year. Most people today want to stay young and avoid diseases and have bought into the idea of supplements to enhance their health. Side effects of supplements aren’t something they often think much about.
Health food stores in America abound with shelves laden with goods that promise miracles for your health. But there are certain dangers involved in surreptitiously ingesting vitamin supplements. Some risk occurs if you’re taking other medications that the supplements might have an adverse reaction to.
The Dangers of Vitamin Supplements
Some people think that “natural” is safe, but that isn’t always true. Some supplements that might endanger your health are:
Weight loss supplements that contain “theophylline.” Theophylline is taken from a black tea extract and bitter orange. It’s sometimes prescribed for asthma but can cause seizures and irregular heartbeat.
Aristolochia. An herb supplement that sometimes causes cancer or kidney failure.
Bitter orange. This is a weight loss supplement that may cause seizures.
Kava. It can be the source of liver failure.
Pennyroyal. An herb that has been linked to nerve damage and liver and kidney failure.
Comfrey. An herb that sometimes causes liver damage.
Lobelia. An herb that can cause tremors, dizziness, breathing difficulties, and low blood pressure.
Androstenedione. It can increase cancer risk and decrease good HDL cholesterol.
Despite possible side effects, there are many instances when supplements are effective. For example, if you’re a vegetarian, senior citizen, or a woman who’s menopausal or post-menopausal, you may not get all the vitamins you need.
People on a severe diet plan, smokers, heavy drinkers, and pregnant women may also need extra vitamins to supplement their diets because many vitamins are difficult to absorb. Gastric surgery people have a list that their doctors recommend for them.
It’s always best to consult a health professional if you suspect that your body needs dietary supplements. Also, check with the FDA (Food and Drug Administration) to see if there are current bans on a particular supplement. The side effects of supplements can be serious if you don’t know what to look for.
It’s common knowledge that you can’t survive long without water. Usually, having a clean water supply isn’t a big deal. Most people have access to plenty of it. Yet, it’s those times of emergency and those times where you’re away from a clean source of water that can have a significant impact on your life. That is why we wanted to test the Lifestraw Prepper Water Filter.
If there’s a situation where the only water you have to drink may be contaminated with bacteria, you could be in trouble. You’d be forced to take a chance and drink it anywhere, opening yourself up to some severe health risks.
People need water to survive and oddly enough, the human body is made up of about 75% water. On average, a human will lose approximately a half-gallon of water each day through urination and perspiration. This amount increases when you sweat due to excessive heat or activity. The fluids lost, simply must be replaced to maintain good health.
With this information, it is easy to understand why water is so crucial to survival. For this reason, it is a great idea to keep an extra stash of water on hand in case of an emergency.
Make finding water a priority
Even if you have some water with you in your survival kit, it is important to locate water quickly if you are stranded for a period of time out in the wilderness. Depending on the length of the situation, you may need more water to drink. It is never too early to plan ahead and search for water.
Adults can survive for several weeks without food but will last only days without water. When fluids that are lost are not replaced, dehydration occurs. Symptoms of dehydration include weakness and loss of mental capacity. Dehydration can not only be serious, but fatal. Finding water is crucial for outdoor survival. This is a skill that must be learned in order to survive.
Find water before food
Often, people make the mistake of searching for food before they give much consideration to locating safe water for drinking. Never wait until you are out of water to decide it is time to look for something to drink.
Finding water can be tricky and takes time. Furthermore, water must be made safe to drink. This task also uses up your valuable time. Keep in mind, that your body is continuously losing water that must be replaced.
While you look for water, it is important to avoid dehydration. To prevent water loss, stay cool. Rest whenever possible. Overexertion will only add to the amount of water your body is losing. Find shade and avoid direct sunlight. Avoid alcohol and fatty foods. This simply wastes the water your body has on hand.
Water needs to be potable
Know That all water is not the same. Although the body needs water to survive, unhealthy drinking water can have serious problems associated with it. Learn about what types of water are considered safe and dangerous. Learning how to properly treat water is a life-saving skill for outdoor survival.
It is wise to make sure that your outdoor survival kit contains the tools you will need to treat water and make it suitable for consumption. You should know how to use the products in the event of an emergency.
Simply having the tools to purify water is not enough. It is imperative that you learn how to properly use these items to make the water safe to drink.
One of the top tools we love that should be in every bug-out bag or medic kit: a Lifestraw.
Lifestraw Prepper Water Filter
Fortunately, there is a way that you can always be prepared. If you have a Lifestraw Personal Water Filter, you’ll never have to worry about being able to drink water.
It’s the perfect tool in the event of a crisis, and your survival is depending on water. One of the reasons that it’s such a perfect item to have around? The simple fact that it doesn’t take batteries in order to operate it. You will never have to worry about it not being usable. It also doesn’t have any parts that need to move for it to work, so you’ll never be caught with a water filter where the elements have worn out.
This Lifestraw is a great item to have on hand at home, as well as in your car. The filter is strong enough to keep out even the most robust bacteria. That means that you would have protection against nasty things like Giardia and Salmonella.
You also won’t have to worry about cryptosporidium or E-coli either. The filter is especially helpful when you’re going to an area that’s known to have problems with the safety of the water supply.
How Lifestraw Works
The filter is lightweight and can fit into your pocket or backpack. Since it doesn’t require you to mix any chemicals, you don’t have to worry about being thirsty and having to wait to get something to drink.
You can insert the filter right into a body of water and drink as much as you want. Because it does the job so well, if you know you’re going to go out hiking or camping and you’ll be near water, you won’t have to load down your gear with bottles of water.
All you need to take to have something to drink is the filter. It can effectively eliminate 99.9999% of bacteria found in water. The EPA rating on this water filter is higher than the score needed to pass approval.
It’s simple to use, too. All you have to do is take the caps off the ends and put the bottom of the filter straw in the water source. As you drink through the straw, the membrane stops the bacteria from reaching your mouth and holds it there.
All you get is good, refreshing water. You’ll want to get one of these filters for every member of your family so that you are prepared in the event you’ll need them.
During stressful situations, your immune system will naturally become stressed, and this can make you more vulnerable to infection. It’s essential to stock up on vitamins that will help your immune system stay in tip-top shape. We came up with a list of the Best Supplements for Immune System stability and strength.
Let’s just look at vitamin C as it is commonly known for its immune-boosting effects. Keeping a supply of it onhand can help you stave off illness. Whenever you got a cold or the flu, you may have heard your mom (and doctor) warn you to drink plenty of fluids and get extra vitamin C. That’s because this particular vitamin can help boost your immune system.
Stock Up on Vitamins to Boost Your Immune System
It’s preferable that instead of waiting until you’re already sick, you bulk up on vitamin C beforehand – to stave off any foreign invaders ahead of time. You can find vitamin C naturally in oranges and other citrus fruit.
Aside from boosting your body’s natural defense system, taking regular doses of vitamin C helps your body heal from minor cuts and wounds. Your tissues benefit from the intake of vitamin C as well, as do your teeth and gums.
This unique vitamin contributes to your absorption of other vitamins within your body, so a deficiency in vitamin C can have prohibited other nutrients from helping your health. Each organ needs specific vitamins to stay healthy and to function correctly. Vitamin C helps those other nutrients get carried out to the organs and tissues that need them most.
Your muscles need vitamin C to stay healthy and flexible, which can help lessen some of the pain you may suffer from now – or in the future. It helps your joint muscles retain their resiliency so that they can bend adequately with a good amount of pressure placed on them.
Vitamin C is also known to be an antioxidant, which helps eliminate free radicals within your body. This simply means that it can help prevent you from developing some types of cancer. Can you see how this made our list of the Best Supplements for Immune System yet?
It can also get rid of toxic byproducts that can be produced from fat metabolism.
Because of its ability to neutralize the toxic byproducts, vitamin C is now known to help prevent heart disease.
It promotes healthy blood flow, which can help fight against atherosclerosis. The healthier your heart is, the longer you may live! Vitamin C can be purchased in pill form that you can get from your local grocery store or as a supplement online.
You can also find it in oranges, strawberries, and cantaloupe. In vegetables, you can find it in tomatoes, broccoli, and cabbage. If you’re not into fruits and vegetables, then it’s recommended that you drink a glass of orange juice every day. Get your daily dose of vitamin C and give your body the boost it needs to stay healthy!
Vitamin C, though, isn’t the only vitamin that will help you, and many scientists believe that vitamin C works in connection with other vitamins but isn’t as effective alone. It actually helps your body absorb iron better!
Why Iron Is Important for Your Health
An iron deficiency isn’t apparent to spot, but it can wreak havoc on your overall health, leaving you feeling sluggish and tired without an apparent explanation. Restless leg syndrome, anemia, dyspnea, and an odd disorder called pica are all a result of having a low iron count. We have to have it in our list of the Best Supplements for Immune System strength.
Restless leg syndrome causes uncomfortable feelings in your legs when you’re at rest and trying to sleep. It can cause insomnia because as you’re trying to fall into a slumber, your legs are still feeling like they need to get up and walk or move around.
Some people who suffer from this have reported that they experience involuntary movements with their legs when they’re at rest or an annoying tingling sensation that drives them to give up on getting rest, so they get up and move around to make it go away.
The restlessness they feel usually can only subside when they move their legs around to wear them out. Although the exact cause of restless leg syndrome isn’t known, those who suffer say that an increase in iron helped alleviate the problem.
Anemia is another condition that’s caused by an iron deficiency. Anemia is when iron levels are low for an extended period without relief, which makes red blood cell production ineffective. This disorder causes chronic fatigue and weakness for the person suffering from it.
It can also cause dyspnea, which is shortness of breath. The low iron levels cause oxygen not to flow freely, therefore sapping you of energy. You can also experience heart palpitations and increased sweat production, and it can even lead to heart failure if left untreated!
Pica is an odd disorder seen in people with a low iron count. Pica is a term used for those who crave unusual items that are considered not edible. Low iron causes your body to want iron. Sometimes, this can result in people eating paper, buttons, and chalk – and in some cases – soil!
Pica can result in other hazardous conditions that may result from eating unhealthy items. Eating soil, for example, can cause a person to contract bacteria or microscopic worms. This behavior can sometimes be treated simply by consuming extra iron.
Low iron can cause excessive bleeding in menstruating women or women who shouldn’t be menstruating at that time. The blood is thinned to the point that blood clotting becomes a little more complicated, and you could essentially lose other nutrients that your body needs.
If you think you’re low on iron, have your doctor run a simple blood test to find out if you’re anemic. You don’t want to take too much iron – just enough to get your levels back to a normal, healthy state. If you need to take it or want to stock up on it, we love THIS brand on Amazon.
More of the Best Supplements for Immune System Strength
Selenium is a mineral that’s been shown in studies to help boost the immune system and prevent disease.
Vitamin D is something your body naturally produces when it’s exposed to sunlight. But if you’re stuck indoors during a pandemic, you’ll likely need a supplement. Vitamin D supplements can be added to your storage to keep your immune system healthy and help you to fight illness.
Vitamin E is an antioxidant that helps your body fight stress. It is especially helpful in increasing your body’s ability to produce antibodies when it comes into contact with a virus.
Zinc is a mineral that’s been found to help boost your immune system. Zinc is one you only need to begin taking if you feel that you’re becoming ill. It can help your body produce more white blood cells and shorten infection time.
Both vitamin B2 and vitamin B6 are known for improving the immune system’s ability to fight infection. Most vitamin B supplements contain both of these and additional forms of the vitamin as well.
Echinacea is an herbal formula that is a natural antiviral and antibiotic. Having this on hand is useful at the first sign that you’re ill. You don’t want to use this to prevent illness.
Much of your immunity lies within your gut through beneficial bacteria. Unfortunately, the antibacterial products and medications that are common can also cause you to have reduced resistance. Taking a daily probiotic can help you have a more robust immune system to fight off infections naturally.
Garlic is also a natural antibiotic and antiviral that helps to reduce inflammation in your body. Eating fresh garlic is the best, but you can store herbal supplements contain garlic in your emergency supplies.
You may get most of what you need by taking a multivitamin daily. Vitamins can help make up for any nutrition you’re missing from your daily diet. This is especially important if you primarily depend on canned foods for your meals in times of duress.
After food and water, hygiene products are the next items that disappear from shelves when a pandemic strikes. So your odds of getting what you have to have during a time when needs are elevated are slim. It pays to know what Family’s Hygiene Necessities for a Pandemic Preparedness would or should look like.
You want to prepare now so that you don’t have to fight crowds. Plus, you want to make sure you can stay isolated from them so that you won’t bring any illness back to your own home.
Cover Your Family’s Hygiene Necessities for a Pandemic Isolation Period
What Do You Need?
You’ll want to figure out how much of each hygiene product your family goes through by adding up what you usually go through in a year. Then multiply that by at least two years.
Hygiene items can store that long, so even if the pandemic doesn’t last that long, you won’t have wasted the expense of buying the items. You’ll need to stock up on toilet paper.
If the Covid-19 panic buying taught us anything, it was the fact that TP is king. There were Facebook groups dedicated to a “where is it now” concept to help people find what they needed. Add in all the TP memes talking about how TP was used to make moonshine, or it was replacing poker chips?
It became pretty clear that this baby is important to have. The best rule of thumb for Pandemic Preparedness is to figure two rolls per family member per week with extra rolls figured in for the event of an illness that could require more usage.
For toothpaste, think that a family of four would need two tubes of toothpaste per month. Dental floss should be figured at one container per month per person. Toothbrushes should be replaced more often during a pandemic because of the higher chance of you having to deal with germs.
A good rule of thumb is to change toothbrushes every four weeks – sooner if anyone in the family has an illness. In between time? Throw them in your dishwasher each week for a quick clean. Toothpaste?
This isn’t so critical as you can even resort to baking soda in a pinch or worst-case scenario? Just brush with water. You really want to get the “scum” off your teeth and prevent plaque build-up.
You’ll need bar soap. If you currently use liquid hand soap, it’s more cost-effective to plan to use bar soap during a pandemic. However, since pandemics are spread through viruses and germs, you’ll want to make sure that you have a hearty supply of hand sanitizer to use during the length of the isolation period.
There are those of us that like to make our own – I have an oatmeal honey sensitive skin bar that I make and love for my daughter’s skin, but prefer the Eucalyptus soap recipe for myself that I found HERE.
While this doesn’t seem like a top priority for pandemic preparedness, everyone in the family – except for infants and small children – will need deodorant. Using the solids is more cost-effective than the spray-on kind. Figure a container per person that uses it per month. It doesn’t really pay to stock up on 5-10 years’ worth of this, it degrades pretty fast.
Feminine Hygiene Items
Feminine products should be figured at the current use, but always store extras in case of additional needs. If you use condoms for intimacy, you’ll want to pack a supply of those as well to keep those little swimmers in check. If you don’t?
You may find a bonus family member in about nine months. There are already jokes about the Covid-19 pandemic babies being called “Quaranteens” a dozen years from now. A few tampons should also go in your first aid kit – professional sports medicine docs use them for nose injuries!
You’ll need to pack in storage a supply of razors for both men and women as well as an amount of shaving cream. The shampoo is something you can also store up, but in a pinch, hand soap can be used to wash hair if you don’t have enough shampoo.
Basic Skin and Nail Care
You never know when a problem will strike, and Pandemic Preparedness needs to take that into account. Is it the middle of winter? Lotions for dry skin should also be on your store list. Also, add Chapstick to prevent cracked lips from occurring. Q-tips and nail clippers for each person should also be stored for use.
It goes beyond saying that if you have infants, you’ll want to store up diapers and baby wipes. Now you’ll want to be careful on the diaper sizing since babies can outgrow diapers. So buy these in size increments to allow for that.