CPR First Aid

Minor Burn First Aid Options and their Efficacy

Minor burns are common incidents that may be treated with proper first aid. It includes first aid practices, tools, and the application of burn-specific treatments. However, in some instances when a first aid response cannot be performed, other options are used as a remedy instead. Some of these are aloe vera, Neosporin, and cling film which is said to be effective in treating minor burns. Let’s find out below if these can indeed be an alternative first aid.

Minor Burn First Aid

There are different first aid management in treating different types of burns. For a first-degree or minor burn, it includes the following first aid steps:

  1. Using running water, cool the burn for about 10 minutes.
  2. If the burned area is under tight clothing and/or accessory, make sure to let it breathe by removing the apparel.
  3. If there are broken blisters, clean them using water and antibiotic treatment.
  4. To prevent the burned area from drying, apply it with lotion.
  5. Bandage the burn using first aid kit items.
  6. If necessary, taking an over-the-counter pain reliever may be done.

Bandaging a burn is part of a first aid course in 123C Colin St West Perth 6005. It is a necessary step for the burn to heal faster and be protected from infection. It applies to burns and other injuries too.

Minor Burn First Aid Options

If the above-mentioned first aid response cannot be done immediately, the below remedies are used instead.

Aloe Vera Gel as a Minor Burn First Aid

In an article from the New York Times, it is mentioned that aloe vera can make a difference in sunburns, blisters, and small burns. These usually cause minor pain, redness, and/or damage to the top layer of skin.

Efficacy of Aloe Vera Gel as a Minor Burn First Aid

A story posted on Aloe Vera of Australia shared how aloe vera crème helped in treating a burn caused by boiling water. It took the patient 6 weeks to be fully recovered from the burn without scarring.

Why Aloe Vera Gel can be a Minor Burn First Aid?

Aloe vera gel is considered a substitute for antibiotic ointment. It has been found to contain anti-inflammatory compounds that act as an antibacterial agent which help in:

  • Reducing inflammation.
  • Inhibiting the growth of bacteria.
  • Promoting circulation.

These properties make aloe vera known to be a “burn plant” in Perth and other cities in the country.

How to Get Aloe Vera Gel for Minor Burn First Aid?

The aloe vera gel can be obtained directly from its plant by:

  1. Slicing off an aloe vera leaf.
  2. Draining out the resin.
  3. Cutting off the spiky sides of the leaf.
  4. Peeling off the aloe skin.
  5. Scooping out the aloe vera gel.

Planting an aloe vera plant and doing these steps may be skipped by purchasing the gel from multiple suppliers and brands in Perth. Both fresh and manufactured aloe vera gels may be used on minor burns.

Cost of Using Aloe Vera Gel as a Minor Burn First Aid

The aloe vera gel would be free if it is obtained from the plant itself. The potted aloe vera plant costs AU$5-AU$42 depending on its size. On the other hand, manufactured aloe vera gel may be at AU$7-AU$700 depending on its weight, brand, and pureness.

Using Aloe Vera Gel as a Minor Burn First Aid

Apply a sufficient amount of aloe vera gel on the burned skin after letting it cool. Do this by gently rubbing the gel onto the burned area 2-3 times a day until the burn is not painful anymore.

Risks of Using Aloe Vera Gel as a Minor Burn First Aid

Web MD states that the use of aloe vera gel has led to itching and eczema in some people. NDTV also mentions that the aloe vera gel may cause the following allergic reactions:

  • Redness in the eyes.
  • Skin rashes.
  • Irritation.
  • Burning sensation.

To avoid these, doing a patch test is recommended.

Neosporin as a Minor Burn First Aid

The third step in the above-mentioned minor burn first aid includes the use of an antibiotic ointment like Neosporin. So using it is ideally part of a process, and not the first aid itself. It is one of the recommended home remedies by GoodRx Health, among others.

Efficacy of Neosporin as a Minor Burn First Aid

The same site says that Neosporin is also called a “triple antibiotic” as aside from minor burns, it can also be used for minor cuts and scrapes. It works by preventing infection which can help a burn heal faster.

Why Neosporin can be a Minor Burn First Aid?

Neosporin is one of the top choices for minor burn antibiotic ointments because it contains the following:

  • Bacitracin.
  • Polymyxin B.
  • Neomycin.

These three antibiotics work together by preventing bacteria from creating proteins that will later make them weaker.

How to get Neosporin for Minor Burn First Aid?

It may be purchased without a prescription from pharmacies in Perth, among the other available over-the-counter burn ointments.

Cost of Neosporin as Minor Burn First Aid

Online prices of 28.3 g Neosporinis show an average cost of AU$15.

Using Neosporin as a Minor Burn First Aid

A small amount of Neosporin is recommended to be applied to the burned area 1-3 times a day.

Risks of Using Neosporin as a Minor Burn First Aid

Below are the reported side effects of Neosporin:

  • Skin rash.
  • Itching.
  • Hives.
  • Swelling.
  • Redness.

If any of the above occurs, it is recommended to report it immediately to a health care professional.

Cling Film as a Minor Burn First Aid

The fifth step in minor burn first aid involves the use of a bandage, sterile gauze pad, and even a medical tape. If these are not available, a good choice may be a cling film as according to Health Direct, it is light, loose, and made of a non-fluffy material. As it is a substitute for the fifth step, cling film may not be considered the sole first aid solution to burns. But it is a helpful first aid step in keeping the burned area clean, especially when waiting for an ambulance.

Efficacy of Cling Film as a Minor Burn First Aid

An article released in the National Library of Medicine concludes that the application of cling film to burn wounds is:

  • Satisfactory to the patients.
  • Cost-effective.
  • Easy to apply.

However, it also mentions that the cling film is labour-intensive.

Why Cling Film can be a Minor Burn First Aid?

Cling film is considered effective in covering and protecting a minor burn from infection because:

  • It is waterproof.
  • It is airtight which keeps moisture.
  • It is thin enough for a minor burn to be cooled or warmed as necessary.
  • It is malleable and may easily be used even on burned body shapes that are complicated like the knuckles or elbows.

A cling film also allows a minor burn to be monitored without it having to be removed.

How to Get Cling Film for Minor Burn First Aid?

Cling film is usually found under the kitchen supplies in stores and grocery shops in Perth. It can also be ordered online through the websites of various packaging suppliers that also deliver in Perth.

Cost of Cling Film as Minor Burn First Aid

Multiple websites display a price range of AU$5-AU$8 per roll of cling film.

Using Cling Film as Minor Burn First Aid

To cover a minor burn using cling film, do the following:

  1. Remove the first part of the cling film on the roll as it may have contained bacteria already.
  2. Open up the cling film in panels.
  3. Lay it on the burn panel by panel.
  4. Use the extra cling film on either side and seal it off.
  5. Apply layers of cling film to the burned area.
  6. Cut off the cling film
  7. Make sure the cling film is properly gripped together.

The cling film can then be secured by cutting a ‘V’ out of it and twisting either side around.

Risks of Using Cling Film as a Minor Burn First Aid

Cling film can be used to protect a minor burn if it is sterile and if the patient may be transferred to a hospital in less than 6 hours. If it is more than that, then a dressing must be considered according to Vic Burns.

Definition of a Minor Burn

Minor burns are first-degree burns that only affect the top layer of the skin (epidermis). The part of the skin affected by a minor burn may:

  • It Looks red and dry.
  • Painful.
  • Look lighter or darker.

There is no blister for a minor burn and it may be caused by different factors.

Causes of a Minor Burn

A minor burn may be a common incident as it may be caused by sources that are found at home or even outdoors. The below list contains the possible reasons and/or sources of acquiring a minor burn.

Sunburns Causing Minor Burn

Sunburns may occur after being exposed to the sun for too long without the reapplication of sunscreen. Better Health outlines the following timeline of how soon sunburns may appear:

  • After 11 minutes: signs of sunburn can start to appear.
  • Within 2-6 hours: skin can turn red
  • Next 24-72 hours: development of a sunburn depending on the severity.

It is also mentioned that more exposure to UV rays may lead to the worsening of sunburns.

Scalds Causing Minor Burn

Healthline mentions that scalds may occur from:

  • Hot liquid spilled from a pot.
  • Steam emitted from hot liquid.
  • Bathing in extremely hot water (above 48°C).

The same site says that scalds occur more often in young children aged 1-3 years old.

Electricity Causing Minor Burn

Below are the possible sources of electricity that may look harmless to young children:

  • Electrical sockets.
  • Electrical cords.
  • Household appliances.

These may cause a minor burn or even electrocution to kids so it is advised to keep them properly when not in use.

Recovery Period of a Minor Burn

A minor burn may fully heal after three to twenty days depending on the area affected. If it is treated following the minor burn first aid mentioned above, it may heal quickly. Constantly monitoring it for possible infection and reapplication of an antibiotic ointment and lotion may also help. The timeline for using the other options as an alternative to the first aid treatment for burns is not yet determined.

Preventing a Minor Burn

The following safety tips may be followed to prevent acquiring a minor burn:

  • Application of sunscreen whenever outdoors especially when the temperature is high.
  • Be cautious when using appliances and unplug them when not in use.
  • Cover electrical sockets with childproof covers.
  • Place electrical cords in areas that children cannot reach.

These easy-to-remember precautionary measures may be effective in keeping yourself and the family safe from acquiring a minor burn.

Complications of a Minor Burn

A minor burn may lead to the following complications, especially if first aid response is not applied immediately.

A Minor Burn May Cause a Shock

A shock may occur if a minor burn is acquired from an electrical source. It has the following signs and symptoms:

  • Pale face.
  • Cold skin.
  • Rapid pulse.
  • Shallow breathing.
  • Yawning.
  • Unconsciousness.

When these occur, it is advised to call 000 for emergency help.

A Minor Burn May be Infected

Determining if a minor burn is infected may be difficult. A minor burn may look red and feel warm to the touch which is also a sign of infection. But this may be avoided if it is bandaged correctly as part of the first aid solution to minor burns.

A Minor Burn May Leave a Scar

A minor burn may leave a scar, and if it is in the visible part of the body like the face, it may cause someone to feel conscious. Fortunately, there are available treatments for the scar of burns.

Conclusion

The first aid process for treating minor burns involves the usage of specific treatments, and some of these may be substituted with other options. For instance, aloe vera gel may be used instead of antibiotic treatment, wherein Neosporin is considered a top choice. In addition, a cling film may be used if standard first aid kit items are not available to cover the burn and protect it from infection.

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