Wound Care 101

Wound Care 101

Quick Tips for Treating a Minor Burn

Have you ever accidentally burned your arm on a curling iron? Grazed your finger against a hot pan on the stove? Touched the iron while pressing your clothes? Ouch!!!

The stinging sensation is impossible to ignore and while it is concerning, it is simply a minor burn. A minor burn is classified as an area burned that is no larger than about three inches. These burns are similar to a sunburn. You will likely feel pain at the burn site and, later, a blister may form.

Properly treated, a minor burn should heal within a few weeks.

Here are some quick tips to help you treat your next minor burn:

Step 1: Cool the burn. You can do this by running cool water over it—cool water, not cold water. If the area is in a less convenient area, you can soak a washcloth in cool water and use it as a compress on the burn.

Step 2: Remove anything that fits tight near the burn. This could be rings on your finger, bracelets on your wrist or tight clothing. Removing these pieces is crucial in case the area swells.

Step 3: Apply a healing ointment like Bacitraycin Plus, which contains aloe vera to help retain moisture in the area and cool the burn on your skin.

Step 4: Lightly cover it with a bandage. You can also take an over-the-counter pain reliever to get rid of some of the pain.

If a blister forms, do not pop it. Instead, keep applying the ointment and keep the blister loosely covered. It will eventually dry out on its own as the burn heals.

If the blister does open on its own, clean the area gently with antibacterial soap. Then re-apply Bacitraycin Plus first aid antibiotic ointment to the area. Loosely cover after applying the ointment. Continue to do this throughout the day to keep it moisturized and free of irritants until the minor burn heals.

Once you have followed all of these quick tips for treating your minor burn, it should heal within a few weeks. Remember, do not scratch the burn. As it heals it may begin to itch, and if you give in to the itch and scratch it, it may leave a lasting scar.


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Bacitraycin Plus is a gentle healing ointment for cuts, burns, and all the ouchies.

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