First-degree burns –
have similar qualities to sunburn, the skin is red and sensation is
intact. This burn is painful and covers a small area of skin.
be treated by running cold water over the area for 5 minutes at a time,
for a total of 30 minutes. Do not let the area become numb and do not
cover the area with anything. The heat needs to leave the body.
– the skin is red and blistered and the pain is much more intense. The
burn normally covers a small area of the body.
Treatment: Second-degree burns are more serious. Initially, running
cold water over the area for 30 minutes will help with the pain, and will
help prevent the heat damaging tissues further. Again, do not let the cold
water numb the area as that could cause further damage. A bad
second-degree burn can cause dehydration, requiring medical treatment. You
should drink lots of water to prevent this.
A second-degree burn should be patted dry with a clean, lint free cloth,
making sure any blistering is NOT broken. If the wound is open, it should
be covered with breathable gauze and a cotton bandage to prevent
infection. If the wound is closed, it can be covered with a clean cotton
bandage that allows the wound to breath, but at the same time, helps
prevent infection and further injury to the area.
If a bandage sticks to the burn when trying to remove it, do not pull it,
but gently run it under warm water until it comes away, then pat the area
dry with a clean cloth.
– the skin is white because the damage has caused skin death. The skin
has no sensation. Burns that cover more than 15% of the body are also
considered third degree as they lead to shock and require hospitalisation.
Third-degree burns require immediate medical assistance and you should not
attempt to treat them yourself. Shock will lower the body temperature, so
it is important to keep the body warm whilst at the same time allowing
heat to escape from the site of the burn itself.
Chemical burns should be
rinsed with water. Medical assistance should be sought as soon as
Please follow these
guidelines when dealing with burns:
NEVER apply ice
to any burn. This will decrease the blood flow to the area and
ultimately cause more damage.
creams or oils to a burn that has broken the surface of the skin in
anything over a burn as you could cause more damage to the area.
NEVER pop the
blisters on a burn as it provides natural defense against infection.
For any burn it is best
to seek medical advice as soon as possible as there may be damage that is
not visible to the naked eye.
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