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Treatment for skin wounds

Wounds happen when there is a break or damage on the skin due to injury. The injury can be the result of chemical, mechanical, electrical, thermal or nuclear sources. The skin is injured in different ways depending on the mechanism of injury.

Types of wounds

  • Inflammation is the initial response of the skin to injury.
  • Superficial wounds and abrasions leave the deeper layers of skin intact and are usually due to friction rubbing against a rough surface.
  • Lacerations can affect the deeper layers of the skin and underlying tissues such as the muscle or bone.
  • Puncture wounds are caused by pointed objects that enter the skin such as stepping on a nail, needle stick or a stab wound from a knife.

Symptoms

Wounds

Stop the bleeding by using a clean washcloth or towel. Apply pressure on the affected area until the flow stops.

  • Swelling, pain and bleeding
  • Sometimes, a large laceration does not cause severe pain if location in an area with few nerve endings while abrasions on fingertips can be painful due to abundant nerves in the area
  • Lacerations may cause bleeding if they occur on the scalp and face

Treatment

  • Wash the affected area in warm running water to wash away dirt, debris or other foreign objects. Disinfect a tweezers using an alcohol and use it to remove any debris stuck in the wound.
  • If the skin around the wound is dirty, clean it using a mild soap, but avoid getting the soap into the wound.
  • Stop the bleeding by using a clean washcloth or towel. Apply pressure on the affected area until the flow stops.
  • If blood immerses through the cloth, place another one over it and continue applying pressure.
  • Elevate the affected area above the level of the heart to lessen the bleeding. If the affected area is the leg, lie on a chair or sofa and prop the leg in a couple of pillows.
  • Once the bleeding stops and the wound is already clean, apply a thin coat of antibiotic ointment and cover with a bandage. Change bandages at least once every day or if it becomes dirty. When a scab forms, remove the bandage and avoid picking on them.

If the cut or gash is very deep, the affected area keeps on bleeding even when direct pressure is applied for 10-15 minutes and there are signs of infection such as swelling, redness, warmth and redness, seek medical help immediately.

Tips

  • Place sharp objects such as forks, knives, scissors and food processor blades in drawers with a safety latch that cannot be easily opened by small children.
  • Keep drinking glasses, coffee mugs and hand mirrors in hard to reach areas to prevent accidents.

More Information / Disclaimer

The information posted on this page on skin wounds is for learning purposes only. Learn to recognize and manage different types of skin wounds and how to perform proper wound care by taking a standard first aid course with one of our training providers.

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