Treating lacerations most often requires basic first aid skills that most people should know. Lacerations – or cuts and grazes as they are commonly referred to as – can occur in a variety of ways. They can be sore and painful but they do not usually require any medical attention. This is particularly the case if you take good care of them when they first happen.
Treating lacerations can be done in several easy steps. Firstly, if the cut is bleeding you should attempt to stop it. Most of the time this won’t take long, but it depends on how severe the cut happens to be. If it is deep or the blood flow doesn’t stop or is quite heavy, then you should definitely seek medical help. More severe cuts may require stitches.
Wash the wound to rinse out any bacteria
Depending on how the cut occurred, there could be bacteria lurking in it. You can wash out most of this by washing the wound with plain water. If you have cut your hand or arm you can do this under the tap. Once this is done, use a clean towel to dry the area, but don’t rub it as this will hurt and it may also disturb the ragged edges of skin. Instead, pat it dry to take away the surplus water.
Next, make sure the cut is covered so nothing can get into it while it is healing. It should heal perfectly nicely on its own, but you need to make sure it doesn’t get infected. This will delay the healing time and make it more painful. Ideally, a waterproof dressing or plaster is perfect, as it means any water won’t get into the wound.
Be alert to the possibility of infection
Sometimes dirt can get into the wound and cause an infection. When this occurs, the skin around the wound tends to become red and inflamed. It may also feel hot. If this happens, use antiseptic to get rid of the infection. Keep an eye on it though, in case the infection gets worse or doesn’t start to disappear. You should seek medical advice if it doesn’t clear up. Make sure you do seek medical advice if something is stuck inside the wound – don’t try to remove it yourself.
Many accidents can result in lacerations for the people involved. You may have faced lacerations if you were hurt in an accident someone else caused. Accident Advice Helpline can consider the evidence and determine whether you could be entitled to compensation. Call 0800 689 0500 now to learn more.
Date Published: January 25, 2016
Author: Allison Whitehead