In hospitals all over the world, scald burns have been the highest cases in emergency rooms. The skin that has been burned by boiling water is considered scalded. The layers of the skin absorb the heat and the tissue is damaged as well as the cells. The liquid leaks from the scalded skin and the body can go into shock as a way to replace the fluids. Even though this can occur, scald burns are considered as the most common type of burn whether at home or in the workplace.
Steps on handling burns caused by boiling water
- You have to pour cold water over the scalded area to cool the skin and dissipate the heat as part of the first aid care. You can utilize a pan of cool water or faucet to cool the area using water for at least 10 minutes and continue until the pain is reduced. In case water is not readily accessible, any liquid can be used.
- Check the burn to check the severity. When it comes to superficial burns, they are distinguished by swelling, redness and inflammation and do not require medical care.
- Call for emergency assistance if the individual is unresponsive, in the state of shock or if there are additional injuries. In case the skin appears raw and blisters start to form, medical care must be provided as soon as possible. It is important to seek medical attention if the burn sustained is more than 1 percent of the individual’s mass or approximately the size of a hand.
- Any clothing or jewelry that is close to the affected area must be removed before the skin will start to swell. Rings must be removed right away if the hand is scalded. If the clothing or jewelry sticks to the burn, do not force it.
- Pat the skin dry instead of using a rubbing motion to prevent any tissue damage. Do not apply any creams, ointments or antibiotics to a burn until they are prescribed by a doctor. Take note that these will only carry the heat deeper into the skin layers, thus causing more damage.
- The body must be wrapped in a loose manner with gauze to shield the tissue from additional injury and infection. The gauze must be slack so that the circulation will not be disrupted. You can use a cold compress over the gauze to help relieve the pain and minimize the swelling. During the healing process, the gauze must be changed at least once a day.
- Elevate the affected area using a pillow or cushion so that the burn can rest higher than the level of the heart. This position can minimize the pressure in the tissue of the injured body part, thus relieving pain.
- The individual must avoid popping blisters. The blisters simply function as a way of the body to protect the delicate tissue that is trying to heal itself. Instruct the individual not to peel the skin. Always remember that burns destroy the protective layer of the body, thus picking the skin while it is healing can increase the risk infection.
Important consideration to bear in mind
You have to test the temperature of the water that comes out of the tap. Only cool water must be used when treating a burn. In case gauze is not available, clean clothing or a clean plastic bag can be used.