When it comes to burns, the first thing that comes to the mind of a person is fires. The truth of the matter is that burns can also come from boiling water, electrical charges, or radiation. Regardless of its cause, burns are perhaps one of the most painful injuries. According to the website of The Benton Law Firm, the United States ranks 8th out of 25 developed countries in terms of mortality rates due to fires. The American Burn Association estimates that there are around 450,000 patients that are treated for burns on a yearly basis.
Types of Burns
It is worth noting that there are different types of burns. Before applying any kind of treatment on the burns, it is first important to knowthe type or degree the burn is. Burn injuries are classified according to how deep the burn penetrates the skin.
First Degree Burn
First degree burns are the least severe type. It affects only the epidermis or the outermost layer of skin. As a result, they heal easily even without medical attention. These types of burns can cause redness, swelling, and pain. It is considered as a minor burn that involves the hands, face, groin, feet, buttocks or a major joint.
As they are regarded as a superficial burn they usually do not require any medical care.
Second Degree Burn
Second degree burns extend much deeper into the dermis, or the second layer of the skin. These types of wounds are characterized by intensified swelling, pain, and redness compared to first degree burns. They are moist and red and could form blisters. If the wound does not exceed 3 inches in diameter, it is just a minor burn. On the other hand if it is more than that and extends to the hands, feet, face, groin, buttocks or a major joint, then it is a major burn and will require medical help. Deep second degree burns can result to scarring.
These are the most serious kinds of burns as it extends to all layers of the skin as well as underlying fats. It may even affect muscles and bone4s. The affected area may be charred black or white. In some cases, it can cause nerve damage. These kinds of wounds may require months to heal and may need burn wound care. People with third degree burns may have the following symptoms : difficulty breathing, carbon monoxide poisoning, and other toxic effects.
These types of injuries are the most devastating as it can affect the muscles or bones. The patinet can have a charred or blackened skin. The pain caused by fourth degree burns is so severe that the patient does not feel pain in the burned area. It requires medical attention and treatment.
Treating Burn Injuries
As mentioned, first degree burns does not require burn wound care as it would heal by itself. However, in the case of second, third, and fourth degree burns, a medical personnel may be required for proper treatment and wound dressing. If you get badly burned, it is important to call the doctor immediately to prevent infection.
One procedure that the doctor may use is wound debridement in order to remove debris, dead skin, and blisters. The doctor will also determine the best option for wound dressing. During the healing process, it is vital that the burn wound should stay clean. The dressing should also be changed frequently as well to prevent it from getting infected. For severe burns, you will stay under the care of the doctor until your condition has improved.Read More