In a survival situation, there is always a risk of becoming injured. If one finds themselves in need of stitches in the middle of nowhere, it may become a do-it-themselves situation with a needle and thread. Before plunging that needle into a wound, however, it is absolutely vital to ensure it is sterile in order to prevent infection. But how can one sterilize a needle, or any other medical equipment, on their own?
Here are a few options to correctly sterilize medical tools:
You can soak your equipment in a 0.1% bleach solution for 15-30 minutes to disinfect and sterilize it. However, any longer than the suggested 30 minutes may result in the equipment rusting, rendering it useless.
This method may not kill some bacteria, but it’ll work in a pinch. Simply place the instruments in gently boiling water for 30 minutes. Using this method repeatedly may result in the instruments rusting, especially knives and scissors, which should always be open during sterilization.
Rogue Preparedness demonstrates how to properly boil instruments in the video below:
You can use basic 70% isopropyl alcohol available at just about any store to sterilize instruments as well. Simply let the tools soak in the alcohol for 30 minutes. Some people choose to ignite the alcohol as well, but it’s not necessary.
To use these methods properly, you need to be able to rinse the needle with sterilized water. Check out how you can disinfect water with a common household product.
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