Scrapes and Cuts
Most cuts and scrapes can be treated at home but for severe cuts you need to go to the ER or hospital.
So, what do I do?
For cuts with some bleeding, put on latex gloves if possible to avoid those unwanted nasties. Most minor cuts and scrapes will stop bleeding on their own in a short while. Clean the scrape with clean water or saline solution and leave it open to heal.
Cuts that are deeper and bleed, you can put gentle pressure on the wound using a clean cloth or some gauze. Apply the pressure continuously for 20 minutes. Do not use tissue or similar items that will leave small fibers behind in the wound that may cause infection at a later stage, this will slow the healing process.
If the blood seeps through the dressing that you are holding on the wound, just add more dressing onto of the ones you have on, without lifting the dressing off. Your aim is to keep pressure on the wound for the clotting to start. Lifting off the dressing can restart the bleeding again.
Some people get very wobbly at the sight of blood, so have them lie down to prevent further injuries. If the wound is on the leg or arm, they can also preferably lie down because it will be easier to raise the limb, this will also help in slowing the bleeding of the wound.
Once the bleeding stops, what should I do?
Once the bleeding has stopped, clean the wound with running tepid water or saline solution. Remove all debris with a sterile tweezer. If the debris is stuck or is too deep and very painful when touched, close the wound with dressing and a bandage and go to the hospital for treatment. Once you have removed all the debris, check to see if the wound will need stiches. Stiches are needed if the wound is 6 millimeters or deeper, the wound is gaping, has jagged edges or has muscle or fat protruding.
You can use antibacterial ointment but it is not necessary as the ointment does not make the wound heal faster, it merely discourages infection. Place clean dressing on the wound, enough to cover the whole wound and bandage over the dressing to keep the dressing in place. Replace the dressing daily and to make sure there is no infection. Treat signs of infection immediately with antibiotic ointment.