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How To Treat a Mild Burn

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Burns can easily happen in any number of situations both at home and in the workplace. A little basic knowledge can go a long way to immediately alleviating pain and reducing damage while treatment is sought.
What you'll need: 
Cool/lukewarm water
Cling film
Burn ointment
Antibiotic cream (Sulfadiazine)
If there is any clothing in the area of the burn that may obstruct treatment or continue to cause injury, remove it as soon as possible. Do not remove any clothes or jewellery in the immediate area of the burn as this may result in further damage to the skin when removed.
The affected area should be placed under cool or lukewarm water as soon as possible. This will cool the skin without exposing it to any further extremes of temperature. You should therefore avoid using ice or iced water.
If the burnt area is large, it may be necessary to cover the patient with a blanket to maintain their core temperature while the affected areas are submerged in water. There is also the possibility of shock, in which case the patient must be kept warm.
Covering the burn with cling film or a plastic bag is useful to protect it and prevent any further damage. The patient can be given painkillers such as paracetamol or ibuprofen at this point.
Once the burn has cooled, treat it with a burn ointment containing aloe vera. This will soothe the skin and begin the healing process.
If the burn is more severe, a cream containing sulfa may be required. Sulfadiazine is an antibiotic cream that should be applied to the burn and then covered with clean gauze. The cream and dressing should be replaced daily while the wound heals.
Knowing how to use a few household items in an emergency situation can be the difference between a minor injury and permanent damage to the skin.
Never apply 'traditional' remedies such as butter or petroleum jelly to a burn as they are more likely to cause further damage and possible infection.
Monitor the burn carefully and if it begins to worsen or become septic, make an appointment to see your doctor.


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