Burns can be caused vy dry heat (fire), wet heat (steam or hot fluids), radiation (sun), heated objects, extreme cold, inhaling smoke or toxic fumes, particularly from chemical explosions or house fires, electricity or chemicals.
The severity of the burn depends on :
- the size
- the area
- the depth
- the cause
Classification of superficial burns
Superficial burns only affect the surface (epidermis). Your skin will be red and painful, but not blistered. Mild sunburn is an example of a superficial burn.
Partial-thickness burns are deeper burns that damage your epidermis and dermis to varying degrees. If the damage to your dermis is shallow, your skin may be pale pink and painful with blisters. Deeper burns to your dermis will cause your skin to become dry or moist, blotchy and red. Deep partial-thickness burns can be painful or painless and may blister. Treatment for burns depends on their severity. You can treat superficial and minor partial-thickness burns caused by heat at home. However seek medical help :
- all deep partial-thickness and full-thickness burns
- all chemical and electric burns
- superficial and partial-thickness burns covering an area larger than the palm of your hand
- burns that cover a jount or are on the face, hands, feet or groin
- all airway or suspected smoke inhalation burns
Home treatment :
- begin by flooding your burn with cool (not cold) water for 10 to 30 minutes or until the pain is relieved
- Don’t burst any blisters that form on your burn
- in case of a superficial and shallow partial-thickness burns, apply a soft silicone dressing with ReSkin Technology over the affected area. Covering partial-thickness burn will reduce pain and speed healing.
- Superficial and shallow partial-thickness burns usually heal within three weeks, with minimal scarring.
Note : ointments or creams may help superficial burns luke sunburnn but don’t apply them on any deeper burns that have caused a change in your skin color or blisters. Always ask your pharmacist for advice before applying ointments or creams.