How to Treat a Burn

Burns are a common but extremely painful injury. While minor burns will heal without much medical attention, severe burns require special care to prevent infection and reduce the severity of scarring. Before you treat a burn, it is important to understand what kind—or degree—of burn you have suffered.

Here's a priceless information. For major burns, call emergency medical help.

How to Treat a Burn

 Until an emergency unit arrives, follow these steps:

1. Don't remove burned clothing.However, do make sure the victim is no longer in contact with smoldering materials or exposed to smoke or heat.
2. Don't immerse large severe burns in cold water. Doing so could cause a drop in body temperature (hypothermia) and deterioration of blood pressure and circulation (shock).
3. Check for signs of circulation (breathing, coughing or movement). If there is no breathing or other sign of circulation, begin CPR. 

4. Elevate the burned body part or parts. Raise above heart level, when possible.

5. Cover the area of the burn. Use a cool, moist, sterile bandage; clean, moist cloth; or moist cloth
towels.Get a tetanus shot. Burns are susceptible to tetanus. Doctors recommend you get a tetanus shot
every 10 years. If your last shot was more than five years ago, your doctor may recommend a tetanus shot booster.

Avoiding Further Damage to Your Burn

  1. 1
    Don’t apply ice to your burn. The temperature change between your burn and the ice is too significant, and the ice will end up causing more damage to your burnt skin. Only apply cool water, or wrap ice in a towel before placing it over your burn.
  2. 2
    Don’t put creams, egg whites, or butter on your burn. Ointments, egg whites, and butter (an old wives trick) trap heat in your burn, which slows the healing process and increases the pain. You can apply lotion to the skin around your burn if it is closed (no blisters or open sores).
  3. 3
    Don’t pop blisters or pick at a burn. Whenever possible, avoid touching the burn directly with your fingertips as this introduces bacteria to the burn. If you have a second or third degree burn, never pop the blister or tug at the peeling skin around the burned area.[8]


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