First aid for people with burns

Posted by Master, Doctor Mai Xuan Thien - Emergency Doctor - Emergency Department - Vinmec Times City International Hospital

First aid for burns plays a very important role in the effectiveness of treatment. There are some severe burns that require specialist treatment and long-term medical care, and there are even life-threatening cases from burn shock.

1. Overview

Burn is tissue damage caused by exposure to heat, chemicals or electricity. Burns can be mild but can also be a life-threatening emergency.
First aid and treatment of burns depends on the location and extent of the injury. Sunburns or other thermal burns with minor injuries can be treated at home. However, there are some severe burns that require specialist treatment and long-term medical care, and there are even life-threatening cases from burn shock.
When suffering a burn, proper home first aid minimizes burn damage, as well as partially prevents burn complications.
Sơ cứu đúng khi bị bỏng bô, bỏng nhiệt
Bỏng do nắng hoặc bỏng nhiệt tổn thương nhỏ có thể tự xử trí tại nhà

2. Symptoms of a burn

Symptoms of burns vary widely depending on the depth of the injury. It can take up to 1 to 2 days for the signs and symptoms of a burn to fully manifest:
First degree burns: Injury that affects only the outermost layer of the skin (the suprapubic). May cause skin redness and burning pain. Second-degree burns: Damage affects both the upper and lower layers of the dermis. May cause swelling and redness, white or red spotty skin. May progress to blistering and severe pain. Second-degree burns can cause scarring. Third degree burns: Damage to the subcutaneous fat layer. The burn area may be black, brown, or white. the skin looks thickened. Third-degree burns can cause nerve damage causing numbness.

3. When does a person with a burn need to see a specialist?

Burns are quite common accidents in daily life, but you need to see a specialist medical facility in the following cases:
For burns in the hands, feet, face, groin, buttocks, and large joints or large areas of the body Deep burns, affecting all layers of the skin or even deeper tissues (fat, fascia, muscle, etc.) Burns that make the skin appear thick Burns Burns or has black, brown or white patches Burns caused by chemicals or electricity Difficulty breathing or burns to the airways
Bỏng điện nguy hiểm thế nào?
Bỏng gây ra bởi hóa chất hoặc điện cần được cấp cứu tại cơ sở y tế

4. Causes of Burns

Depending on age and working environment, the causes of burns will vary, and are classified into the following groups:
Thermal burns: Fire, steam, hot liquid; metal, glass or other hot objects Electrical burns Radiation Heat from the sun (ultraviolet rays) Chemicals such as: Detergents, paint thinners or strong acids. Due to violence (family, society, school)

5. Complications of burns

Deep and extensive burns can cause certain complications
Bacterial infection, which can lead to sepsis or septic shock Loss of fluid, including all of the circulating volume Hypothermia Affects airways due to Inhalation of hot gases or fumes Scarring damage Bone and joint problems, such as scar tissue causing spasticity, skin and muscle tendons.

6. First aid for people with burns

Cool the area: Keep the burned area under cool running water (not cold water) or cover with a cool, wet towel until the burning sensation is reduced or gone, however it is recommended to keep it under cool running water. and have better heat exchange. Do not use ice. Applying ice directly to the affected area can aggravate other lesions. Remove rings or bracelets quickly, and as gently as possible before the affected area begins to swell. Do not break scalds. The blisters have a role in fighting infection. If the burn is broken, clean with water (possibly with a little soap). Apply antibiotic ointment, stop if signs of irritation or allergy appear (erythema, itching,...) Apply moisturizer: As soon as the burn area is cooled, apply a moisturizer, such as any Creams containing aloe vera or humectants. This moisturizes and relieves dry skin. Cover the burn area with a sterile bandage, loosely tied to avoid putting pressure on the damaged skin. The bandage seals the burn area, relieves pain and protects the skin burn. Use pain relievers: In case of severe pain, you can use common pain relievers such as: Paracetamol, Ibuprofen.
Sơ cứu khi bị bỏng lửa, bỏng nước sôi
Che phủ vùng bỏng bằng băng vô trùng, buộc lỏng để tránh tạo áp lực lên vùng da tổn thương

7. Burn Prevention

Minimize the risk of burns at home and work Do not leave hot objects on inconspicuous areas Beware of young children when approaching high-risk areas such as kitchens Keep young children away Keep away from hot water Keep power tools away from water, or have a protective cover Check the temperature of food before giving it to a child. Do not wear loose, revealing clothes when cooking (flammable) Turn off electrical appliances when not in use (such as irons, heaters, ...) to keep out of reach of small children. Unused sockets need to be covered. Keep power cords in a safe place where small children cannot play and bring them to their mouths to chew. If smoker never smoke in flammable places It is advisable to have smoke detectors on the floor at home or work. Check operability regularly. Should have fire fighting equipment in the house When using chemicals, must wear protective gear, and strictly follow the manufacturer's instructions. Keep chemicals, flamethrowers, matches out of the reach of small children, use it safely, do not use flamethrowers as toys Take precautions against the risk of external burns, especially if you are in a place where they may be exposed. with chemicals, extremely hot substances. As well as the risk of skin burns when exposed to the sun.

Vinmec International General Hospital with a system of modern facilities, medical equipment and a team of experts and doctors with many years of experience in medical examination and treatment, patients can rest assured to visit. examination and treatment at the Hospital.

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