How to Treat Burns Based on the Severity Level

How to Treat Burns Based on the Severity Level – Accidents can happen at any time, including being
accidentally exposed to fire or hot objects and causing burns. Burns are
characterized by severe skin damage and cause skin cells to die.

Some people recover from burns and leave no scars, but this depends on the
severity. Don’t be careless, let’s see how to treat burns properly according
to the severity level below!

1. There are several degrees of burn severity

Reported by Healthline, burns are divided into four levels of severity:

  • 1st degree burns: characterized by redness of the skin, but no blisters
  • Second degree burns: the skin blisters and looks thickened
  • 3rd degree burns: extensive thickening of the skin with white patches and
    roughening of the skin surface
  • 4th degree burns: burns that extend to the tendons (muscles) and bones, and
    appear black

In addition, there are also 5th and 6th degree burns.

2. Burns are not caused by fire alone, but by other objects

There are several things that can cause burns. Heat sources, including fire,
hot liquids, steam, and contact with hot surfaces are the most common causes
of burns.

Other causes include exposure to:

  • Chemicals, such as cement, acids or drain cleaners
  • Radiation
  • Electricity
  • Sun (ultraviolet or UV light)

Burns caused by chemicals and electricity need to be treated immediately
because they can affect the inside of the body, even though the visible skin
damage is not severe.

3. Characteristics of first-degree burns

Skin damage from first degree burns is not too severe. These burns only affect
the outer layers of the skin and can heal quickly. Its characteristics are
redness, mild inflammation, swelling and pain.

Then, as these burns heal, the skin will dry and peel. Usually these burns
will heal within 7-10 days and leave no scars.

4. How to treat first-degree burns

There is no need to see a doctor, because first degree burns can be treated
alone at home. Treatment is by soaking the wound in cold water for 5 minutes
or more, then applying an antibiotic ointment and covering it with gauze to
protect the skin.

If you still feel pain, you can take drugs such as acetaminophen or ibuprofen
at reasonable doses. Avoid applying ice cubes to burned skin because it can
make skin damage worse. Also, don’t wipe the wound with cotton because it can
increase the risk of infection.

For sunburn, you can apply aloe vera gel.

5. Characteristics of second degree burns

Second-degree burns damage the top layer of skin. As a result, the skin will
be blistered, red, sore, and sometimes these blisters are filled with fluid.
After that, a fibrinous exudate appears, which is thick, soft, scab-like
tissue that is over the wound.

Of course, second-degree burns heal longer and more difficult than
first-degree burns. Usually these burns will heal within 2-3 weeks and leave
no trace of scar tissue. However, skin pigment will change. How to handle it
is not much different from first-degree burns.

Also, according to the Cleveland Clinic, your doctor may prescribe a stronger
antibiotic cream that contains silver, such as silver sulfadiazine, to kill
bacteria. Elevating the burn can help reduce pain and swelling.

6. Characteristics of third degree burns

Damage from third-degree burns is even more severe. Its characteristics are
that the color turns white, the skin becomes reddish, the texture is rough,
the skin blisters and leaves scar tissue.

If you want to get rid of scars, surgery (skin graft) is needed. In addition,
third degree burns have a high risk of complications, namely infection, blood
loss, shock, and death. Damaged skin is susceptible to entry by bacteria.

Skin grafts replace damaged tissue with healthy skin from uninjured body
parts. The area where the skin graft was taken usually heals on its own. If
the person did not have enough skin available for skin grafts at the time of
the injury, the source of the temporary graft may be from a deceased donor or
an artificial source, but this will eventually need to be replaced with the
patient’s skin.

Treatment also includes extra fluids, usually given intravenously, to keep
blood pressure stable and prevent shock and dehydration.

7. Then, what about fourth, fifth, and sixth degree burns?

Burns are classified up to six degrees. For fourth degree burns, the skin will
be charred with the possibility of exposed bone skin. In addition, muscles,
nerves and tendons are permanently damaged, requiring amputation or the skin
will rot over time.

For fifth degree burns, the skin will be charred and some of the tendons,
muscles, and bones will be permanently damaged. Of course, this burn required
an amputation.

In sixth-degree burns, the skin and flesh disappear, leaving only the bone
exposed. The chance of death is very high with these sixth degree burns.

So, that’s how to treat burns based on their severity. Be careful not to get
burned, okay!

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