First aid is called “First Aid” because it’s the first type of medical help someone gets following an accident or incident; the importance of first aid is huge. If treatment is administered correctly and properly then it could save a victim from additional problems when paramedics arrive and further along the line to recovery. In the worst case scenarios it could even save someone’s life.
Minor burn injuries are quite a common thing in the household, especially in the case of small children – most of these can be easily treated with basic burn first aid and will not result in a trip to the hospital. However, in the case of a major burn injury then a trip to the hospital is essential but burn first aid is vital, and could save the patient from needing cosmetic surgery further down the line.
There are a few key things to note when treating any burn:-
Remove the heat source – this may be obvious but when in a panic trying to figure out the best thing to do for someone, this is the one thing that gets forgotten. Whatever is causing the burn, or caused it, make sure it is removed ASAP. If it a flame put it out, if its electricity related, turn the power off etc.
Cool it – even though the cause of the burn may have been removed this doesn’t necessarily stop the area from burning. It’s important for you to run the affected area under a cold tap within the first 20 minutes of the injury – although the sooner this is done, the better. This should help to ease the pain slightly as well.
Cover it – once the area is cooled then it should be covered with a dressing. The best material to cover a burn is actually cling film. This act of covering it will protect the area whilst the body naturally reacts to the affected area and offers protection against infection. The main thing here is not to wrap up the area tightly as this may cause swelling later on.
Pain Relief – some sort of pain relief is often needed so tablets such as ibuprofen should do the trick in minor cases. In more severe cases however, something more powerful will be needed in and these types of treatment are normally administered by a doctor or a paramedic on their arrival.
The faster you act on a burn injury the quicker the healing process will start, hopefully meaning that the consequences will be less severe for the patient.
This article was written by Laura Black from www.firstaid.co.uk/Burns-First-Aid-CBURNSFIRSTAID/, experts in burns first aid.