- April 19, 2022
How to treat first degree minor burn
A first-degree burn is an injury that affects the outermost layer of the skin. First-degree burns are among the most minor types of skin injuries, and they rarely require medical attention. They happen when someone accidentally touches a hot stove, curling iron, or hair straightener. Second and third degree burns, on the other hand, are partial thickness burns that can be extremely extensive and painful, necessitating a visit to the doctor. Most first-degree burns may be treated at home, but knowing what to do is crucial. They can be painful and leave a scar if not treated appropriately. Likewise, sunburn is part of first degree burn.
Use the following tips to treat a first-degree burn:
Cool the burn
Applying moderately cool water is the first step to treating first degree minor burn. Make sure not to apply ice mistakenly or being misunderstood. The extreme cold from ice can injure the tissue even more. If possible, particularly if the burn is caused by chemicals, hold the burned skin under cool running water for 10 to 15 minutes until it does not hurt as much.
Apply petroleum jelly
Applying petroleum jelly two to three times daily can be effective to cure first degree burn. Petroleum jelly originally promotes as a topical ointment for its healing properties. Other ointments, toothpaste or butter to the burn, can cause an infection due to the properties that may be intolerant to the burn. Avoid any topical antibiotics unless you consult with a doctor.
Cover the burn with a nonstick, sterile bandage
Allow blisters to cure on their own while covering the affected area. Apply a sterile non-stick bandage to the burn and secure it in place with medical tape or wrap to protect it from rubbing and strain. Change the dressing on a daily basis. Consult a doctor if the burn is painful. Also, remember not to pop the blisters because this can lead to infection and delay the healing process.
Consider taking over-the-counter pain medication
Over the counter (OTC) medication can help reduce pain and lower a fever. These medicines can be purchased without a prescription. If you’re comfortable taking a pill without a prescription, consider taking over-the-counter pain relievers. In some cases, medicines can cause allergies or symptoms so make sure you’re not affected by an allergy or so before you take an OTC pain reliever. Acetaminophen or ibuprofen can aid with pain relief and inflammation reduction.
Protect the area from the sun
Once the burn has healed, seek shade, wear protective clothes, or apply a broad-spectrum, water-resistant sunscreen with an SPF of 30 or higher to the affected region. Because the redness from a burn can last for weeks, especially in people with darker skin tones, this will help decrease scarring.
First-degree burn often heal on its own without the need for medical attention, simply if the steps are followed correctly. However, if your first-degree burn is really large, the victim is an infant or an elderly person, or you suspect your burn is more severe, seek emergency help right away.
Naz Kleiman is a ANCC board-certified Nurse Practitioner with over 13 years of nursing experience in trauma nursing, primary care, women’s health, urgent care, workmen’s comp, allergy testing and family medicine. She graduated from the University of Texas with a Bachelor of Science in Nursing and Walden University with Master of Science in Nursing.