A home is a common place for accidents. According to a 2020 US study, over 156,000 preventable injuries occurred in this place. Burns is one of the commonest that can occur when you touch a hot pan while cooking, spill a hot coffee, or perhaps spend too much time under the hot sun. While you can take preventive measures to avoid them, accidents happen, and often, there is little you can do to prevent them. Unless severe, you can treat most burns at home without visiting the hospital. Here is how.
- Run burns under cool water
When you suffer a mild burn, run cool water over the affected area for about 20 minutes. Then, using mild soap and water, cleanse the burnt area. It is critical to completely clean the burn after running it under cool water. Avoid scrubbing while using a mild antibacterial soap. On the other hand, gently cleaning the burn can help avoid infections that could hamper healing. The affected person may require medical treatment if the burn does not heal properly.
- Use bandages
You may have to cover small first or second-degree burns with a bandage if the blisters aren’t open. However, if the burn location indicates that chafing is possible, dirt can freely enter the skin. Additionally, a bandage may offer an infection barrier if blisters have begun to bleed. It is critical to loosely wrap the bandage and avoid placing adhesive bandages directly on the wound. You can use adhesive remover for skin to painlessly remove a tough bandage that has been on your skin for some time.
- Apply antibiotic creams
You can use antibiotic lotions and ointments when a burn develops open blisters. Antibiotic creams can kill bacteria, protect the affected area, and speed healing. Some acne ointments also have pain-relieving properties, which may provide relief. It is not advisable to leave blisters exposed after using an antibiotic lotion as this increases the risk of wound infection.
- Limit exposure to the sun
Protecting the affected area from the sun is essential when it is healing. Wear protective clothing or ones that offer good cover for the burn. You can also apply broad-spectrum, seek shade, and use a water-proof sunscreen with an SPF of 30 or more. Limiting sun exposure can help reduce scarring since the sun’s redness effect can persist for weeks, particularly in people with dark skin tones.
- Take an over-the-counter pain reliever
Burns, like most injuries, may cause pain until they are completely healed. It is common for individuals to feel pain and sometimes swelling after suffering a burn. Fortunately, you can use several over-the-counter (OTC) safe and active pain relievers to reduce the sensation. Most of these pain relievers are nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs that can reduce inflammation. When in doubt, it can be useful to seek professional medical care.
Unlike second-degree burns, first-degree burns normally heal without medical attention. However, it is important to seek immediate emergency medical attention if the burn is severe or large, either to a new baby or senior.