How to Treat Minor Burn Injuries – And When to Seek Medical Attention
A serious burn is more than an inconvenience – it can actually be life threatening. Even a minor burn can become infect and quickly turn into a major burn. Burn injuries are more than painful though – they can be disfiguring and can lead to long-term problems. At Law Offices of Fernando D. Vargas, we are ready to represent people who’ve been injured in burn accidents but we recognize that not every burn injury is that serious. Here are some tips for handling first-degree burns.
Look for the signs of a first-degree burn
First off, try to determine if it’s a first-degree burn. These types of burns will typically involve red skin, peeling skin, minor swelling, significant pain, and inflammation around the area that was burned. If you’re not sure if it’s a first-degree burn or something more serious, seek medical attention.
Measure how big the burn is
In the event the burn you’ve experienced is longer than three inches and is located on any of these spots, get medical attention right away:
Soak the burn right after it happens
If you determine that the burn is minor and doesn’t require medical attention, then soak it in cool water. Do this for at least five minutes, or do it for longer if possible. This will cool down the skin and help prevent further damage.
Use over-the-counter products to treat pain and swelling
Ibuprofen and acetaminophen are great options for pain relief – just be sure to only take one of the two and follow the directions on the bottle or as recommended by your doctor. Aloe vera gels have an ingredient known as lidocaine, which acts as an anesthetic to cool and soothe the burn. You can also use a burn ointment on it and then cover it with a loose gauze to protect it from further pain.
Common old wives’ tales that don’t work
Many people believe that if they put ice, butter, eggs, or cotton balls on their burns, that they’re treating it well. In fact, all of these substances can actually make the burn worse or increase the chance of infection. As always, if you have a burn that you’re not sure about, then your first stop should be an emergency room.
If you intend to sue then you should visit the doctor
If you were injured in a car accident, or other type of accident, and you believe you have a personal injury case, then you’ll want to visit your doctor about your burn. They can document it so that you’ll have what you need when it comes time to prepare your case. For additional information on how to prepare your case, feel free to call Law Offices of Fernando D. Vargas at 909-982-0707 for a free legal consultation.