What's everything I need to know about using Band-Aids in regard to common, minor childhood injuries?
I have two boys, ages 12 and 19 1/2. Everything that I will write is based on my experience with them and with my own mishaps.
For a scraped knee, I recommend the expensive "second skin" type of bandage. It will puff up and start to look white. You can bath with this on. No scab ever forms. If it starts to peel away at the edge, trim with scissors. If so much of the bandage separates from the skin that part of the wound is exposed, then you'll need to take it off and put a new one on.
They come in a variety of sizes.
With this type of bandage, a scab never forms.
If the appearance starts to bother you after a few days, you can put some gauze on top to block your view.
If you don't want to do that, then when you're past the bandaid or bandage point, after a few days, put something greasy on the scab once or twice a day. It could be vaseline, Aquafor or antibiotic ointment.
For a cut that doesn't need stitches, use steri-strips. Put a bandage of some type on top if there's any danger of the wound getting dirty, or if the child feels less anxious with a bandage on top. For a big area, you'll want to use gauze and adhesive tape. I'm partial to paper tape.
My favorite bandaid is NexCare. Very flexible and comfortable.
Children often enjoy theme bandaids.
You'll want to have a variety of sizes on hand. You don't need a lot of the medium and large ones, though.
When I have a mishap that results in some puncture of the skin, as soon as I get a bandaid on it, the pain is lessened or goes away.
Keep an ice pack in the freezer -- this can reduce pain quickly. Keep a teething ring in the freezer too, for injuries to the mouth.
If you look carefully in the pharmacy, you will hopefully find a "no-sting" antiseptic squirt-type spray. If the child complains of stinging nevertheless, then, if there is no visible dirt or gravel needing to be removed, you should be okay dabbing a spot of antibiotic ointment on the pad part of the bandaid before you put it on (skipping the washing step).
If the child needs to bathe and there is a recent scrape or cut, use a waterproof bandaid. However, these really don't let the wound breathe, so don't use these around the clock. This is the type of bandage that is mostly transparent, with a paper strip around the edge that you peel off.
You will also want to have a magnifying glass, a needle, some rubbing alcohol to sterilize the needle, and some diagonal tweezers. For splinters. Pick a spool of thread in a color you never use, and store the needle poking into the top of the spool, in the medicine cabinet, so you don't have to go running all around the house collecting your materials.
Get a prescription for some Emla cream from the pediatrician to keep on hand. You'll need to apply this before you go poking around with the needle. It numbs the skin. You can also use this before a blood test.
Keep a couple of garden-variety bandaids in the car and in the bike bag. Also put some meat tenderizer in the car, for bee stings.
Final tip. If a child is upset about an injury and asks for a bandaid, nothing is gained by withholding it, even if you don't see any blood or anything.