Issue 4 Stories
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Treating Minor Burns at Home

If you experience a minor or second-degree burn, home treatment is usually all you need for the burn to heal on its own. In general, follow this advice:

• First, cool the burn. If possible, run cool tap water over the burned area for 10-20 minutes. If the burn is on the face or body, gently apply cool compresses.

• Do not apply ice, ice water or butter to the burn. These items can cause additional tissue damage.

• Remove any jewelry or clothing in the affected area, particularly if there’s a chance of swelling.

• To avoid infection, wash your hands before handling the burn, and try not to touch the burned skin directly.

• If you need to clean the burn, gently wash the area with cool water and pat dry with gauze or a clean cloth. Do not rub.

• Do not break open any blisters that form.

• If a blister has not broken open, no bandage is needed. If a blister bursts, loosely bandage the area, and change the bandage when it becomes soiled.

• If a bandage becomes stuck to the burned skin, soak the bandage in lukewarm water to help loosen it.

If you have any concerns or questions about the burn’s severity, or if it becomes infected, see your doctor.

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