Burns can occur quickly and inflict painful damage to the skin. The skin is your body’s first line of defense against infection and the elements. If you are burned, you should treat the burn immediately to prevent infection and to reduce pain. There are several types of burns, and they can range in severity. Burns are classified based on their depth and can deepen with time.
For example, sunburn may begin as a first-degree burn but then develop into a second-degree burn with blistering. An electrical burn may not seem very serious on the surface of the skin. However, electrical currents can cause injuries to muscle groups and even the heart and should be treated as an emergency. Chemical burns can also range in severity and should be taken very seriously. At any point if you experience a burn, please stop by QuestCare Urgent Care Centers and let our doctors take a look at the burn.
First Degree Burns
A first-degree burn is superficial and causes a localized inflamed reaction. Most sunburn is considered first degree burns. Typical characteristics of a first-degree burn are pain, redness and swelling around the area of skin that is burned.
Second Degree Burns
Second Degree burns are deeper into the tissue and in addition to pain and redness the skin will begin to blister. This type of burn requires medical attention.
Third Degree Burns
Third Degree burns are the most severe type of burn. A third-degree burn involves all layers of the skin and damages the nerves and muscle. This type of burn may look white and leathery and may not be painful because nerves have been damaged. A third-degree burn requires immediate medical attention.
If you experience a minor burn (first degree) you should follow these first aid tips:
- Clean the wound with warm water.
- Remove any jewelry or tight restricting articles from the burn area. Burns may swell, and jewelry may become stuck.
- Apply a topical antibiotic cream like Neosporin to the burn.
If the burn covers a large part of the body or you are unsure how severe the burn is, you should seek immediate medical attention. Second and Third Degree burns should always be treated by a doctor. If you experience an electrical or chemical burn, you should also call 911 or go to your nearest emergency room.