Getting a medical ID is a vital step in protecting your health and safety in emergencies. Here are some important things to consider when choosing the best medical ID for you.
1. Choosing between a medical ID bracelet or necklace:
Emergency medical IDs are usually worn as a bracelet or necklace. Your wrists and neck are usually the first places where first responders are trained to look for medical identifications during an emergency.
A medical ID should be worn at all times. Choose the form of jewelry that is the least intrusive in your daily activities and the most comfortable for you to be wearing. Taking off your medical ID bracelet or necklace can be dangerous because unexpected emergencies can strike at any time.
2. Metal types, value, and durability
Medical IDs are made of durable precious metals like stainless steel, sterling silver, gold, and gold-filled. Your medical ID’s value and longevity will depend on the type of material you choose and the quality of the manufacturer you opt to use. For instance, stainless steel medical ID bracelets or necklaces are a great option for when it comes to being scratch-proof.
Tarnish is a natural occurrence for any metal except gold but proper care and storage of medical IDs (if you have more than one) can help slow the rate of tarnish.
Don’t forget to consider metal allergies if you experience discomforts when wearing certain types of metal. Certain metals have different cleaning methods, storage requirements, and chemicals and environments to avoid. Here are some of our top tips to keep in mind when choosing which metal to customize your ID with:
Metal Type of Jewelry
Chemicals and Environments to Avoid
Treated polishing cloth
Do not mix with gold and silver. Store sterling silver jewelry separately or use a jewelry box with compartments.
Household cleaners that contain ammonia and/or chlorine. Chlorinated products such as chlorine bleach and chlorine found in swimming pools.
Non-abrasive cloth dipped in a bowl of soap and warm water. Rinse and dry with clean cloth.
Store in sealed container or zip-lock bag to avoid scratching.
Limited exposure to chlorine found in cleaning products or swimming pools generally won’t cause any harm to stainless steel but we recommend that people not wear any jewelry in the pool just to be safe.
Gold and Gold-Filled
Use a soft chamois cloth to clean and buff jewelry.
Store separately or wrap each item in a soft cloth. Do not store with other metals.
Acidic environment such as acidic skin or air can cause tarnish.
Cleaners that contain ammonia and/or chlorine.
Non-abrasive soap or cleanser and water. Dry completely with a soft cloth.
Keep jewelry in a soft cloth or bag.
Metal polishers and scrubbing s
3. Chains and wristbands
Neck chains and bracelets hold medical ID plates, pendants, and charms together. They’re an important part of medical alert IDs that secures medical information around your wrist or neck.
Chain style can impact the overall look of a medical ID. When it comes to metal chains, you can choose from options like curb, cable, rope, box, marine, bead, or figaro chains.
Different materials of wristbands are there to suit varying taste, lifestyles, and levels of activity. For instance, silicone bands are perfect for an active lifestyle since it is rubber-like and is heat resistant. Some medical IDs can be interchanged with different bands to match casual or more formal occasions. Interchangeable bands include silicone, beaded, suede, crystal chains, and leather cords.
4.The right medical ID size for your neck, wrist, and engraving
A medical ID is most comfortable and enjoyable to wear when it’s the right size for your wrist or neck. Sizing can also impact the look of your jewelry. For instance, medical ID necklaces can have the following lengths:
45.72 cm or 18"
A shorter length that falls around the base of the neck for men and at the collarbone for women
50.80-55.88 cm or 20"-22"
This length will fall right at the collarbone for men and a few inches below the collarbone for women.
60.96 cm or 24”
Falls below any neckline
68.58 cm or 27"
Extra long and falls at or just below the bust for women and below the sternum for men.
Tip: Find out the right necklace length for you by measuring one of your own necklaces. You can also use a string to determine the length you want. Drape the string around your neck and measure it in centimeters or inches.
When it comes to bracelets or wristbands, it is recommended to use a measuring tape to determine your preferred fit. Follow these steps:
Place the end of your tape measure on the center of your wrist (right at where the wrist bone is).
Wrap it snugly around your wrist and note the measurement where it meets.
Add 1.27 cm or half an inch to your wrist measurement to find your bracelet size. For example, if your wrist measures 17.78 centimeters, add 1.27 cm for a final bracelet size of 19.05 centimeters.
Last but certainly not the least, the style and size of your medical ID can allow different amounts of medical information to be engraved i.e. some designs will only have one engraved side while classic bracelets allow for more information on the front & back. If you have more than one medical conditions, allergies, medications, or emergency contacts, consider a larger medical ID plate that can be engraved on both sides. A wallet card can also be helpful in supplementing more information to first responders.