Burns sustained at home are usually caused by a variety of unforeseen disasters such as steam escaping from a kettle, splatter of grease from a frying pan or accidentally holding a heated crafting tool. In such circumstances, the initial instinct of most is to apply a thick skin cream or any topical ointment. Nevertheless, there are some household treatments that should not be applied on burns. As long as proper first aid care is provided, you no longer need to utilize any type of cream for minor burns.
With this in mind, you have to register for first aid training today so that you will learn the basics in burn management measures so that you are prepared.
What is the initial step?
Prior to applying anything on the burn, proper first aid must be carried out. Initially, you have to remove any clothing or jewelry around the affected area. Immerse the burn in cool water. Do not use ice water or place ice directly on the burned skin since they will rapidly cool the body, thus worsening the burn.
Dry the affected skin carefully and apply clean gauze to prevent air from striking the burn. Over-the-counter pain medications can be given to help reduce the pain and swelling. For an added measure, you can apply certain types of skin creams over the burn.
What are suitable topical treatments?
The safe topical treatments to use on burns include anesthetic creams, antibiotic creams or aloe gel. A fresh aloe vera gel from a live plant is also recommended. All you have to do is to trim off a lower leaf that is close to the middle stalk and remove the edges. You have to use a knife to slice the leaf in a length-wise manner and gently rub on the affected area. Take note that fresh aloe vera gel is highly recommended for thermal burns, skin irritation and even sunburn. If gels from the drugstore or market are used, always check if the product contains a high content of aloe vera.
Home remedies to avoid
Certain home remedies such as applying margarine, butter, cooking oil or any thick, greasy ointment is not advised. Always bear in mind that these oily substances will allow the skin to retain heat and make the burn worse, thus adding to the risk for infection. If butter is applied on a burn, removing it can be painful.
Proper assessment of the burn
Before a burn is treated at home, you have to check if it is minor or serious. Home treatment can be given for first-degree burns and minor second-degree burns.
When to seek medical care
Any type of skin burn that covers a large part of the body or located on the feet, hands, groin, face, buttocks or major joint requires medical care. Home management should be limited to second-degree burns that are smaller than three inches in diameter. Medical care is required for third-degree burns and those that are accompanied by symptoms such as smoke inhalation, difficulty breathing, weakness and severe pain.