Getting through a disaster situation will likely require getting by without easy access to all the specialized products to which we’ve grown accustomed. Thus multi-use items, especially an inexpensive, easily acquired product such as baking soda should be staple in your disaster preparation. The versatility of baking soda, or sodium bicarbonate, has long been recognized dating back to ancient Egypt. You may be aware of some of its uses like deodorizing your refrigerator or shoe closet, and of course making science fair volcanoes with vinegar added to it for that perfect fizzy eruption, but it’s also good for a number of things you’ll want to do once supplies are tight and hard to come by.
You may not be able to store every single kind of medicine out there for all the ailments you could face during a disaster, but this is why baking soda is an excellent thing to have on hand. You can use it for so many things, many of them important, and able to take the place of other more expensive practices. Melissa Breyer of care2.com says:
Baking soda is a safe and effective antacid to relieve heartburn, sour stomach and/or acid indigestion. Refer to baking soda package for instructions.
You probably don’t want to try just taking a spoonful of this stuff if your stomach is upset, and be mindful of the taste, because it’s not flavored and can be pretty strong if you’re not used to it. Baking soda can ease heartburn though but should be mixed with water to make a paste before ingestion; you can consult with your doctor on this and some of the other ideas throughout this article before use if you’re concerned at all with your safety.
Baking soda doesn’t just ease the pain of heart burn and indigestion, but can also make bug bites and scrapes feel less sore and itchy. Christine Halvorson of How Stuff Works advises:
For sunburn pain, saturate a washcloth with a solution of 4 tablespoons baking soda in 1 quart water. Apply to affected area.
Considering this can save you from having to invest in stocking up on aloe and calamine lotion, although both are good ideas to have on hand well. Perhaps you can keep a backup supply of baking soda in case you out of any of the other products that could be used for these purposes.
Okay, so a spa day might be on the bottom of your list of important things to do when it comes down to crunch time and you’re placed in an emergency situation, but long term efforts may require a little more care for your body and extra hygiene than you expected you’d need. This is when baking soda comes in surprisingly handy. Allyou.com writes:
Exfoliate your skin with a paste of 3 parts baking soda to one part water. Apply gently with your fingertips in a circular motion, then rinse.
As a morale booster, and a way to make your skin feel really soft and smooth, try the above technique of rubbing the paste mixture gently into your face before rinsing thoroughly. You don’t want to do this every single day, but a couple of times a week won’t hurt because baking soda is so mild on the skin.
Not just your body, but the place you live will also require a good scrubbing at some point or another and having products that make you feel good about their effect on the environment, as well as their effectiveness on stains and odors is important. Fortunately, when you run out of green cleaner, baking soda does wonders for taking stains out of clothing, whitening your kitchen floors, and being used as a bleaching agent for other marks around the house.