So, I’m wrong. For nine years I’ve been telling my son to let his small cuts and grazes ‘air out’ and ‘dry up’. Actually, what I should have been doing was covering them up.
And according to new research by BAND-AID, I’m not the only one dishing out the wrong advice to gen-next!
Most Australians are in the dark when it comes to best practice wound care, putting not only their health at risk, but also their childrens, according to the research.
In fact, 60 per cent of those surveyed admit they’re unsure how to treat more serious wounds, cuts and blisters, saying they “hope for the best” when dealing with their own cuts or those of a family member. Well, that makes me feel a little bit better. But we need definitive answers and how-tos.
So how should we treat those cuts and grazes?
I’m glad you asked.
Because I was wondering the exact same thing. So, not one to let an opportunity pass me by, I took advantage of spokesperson for BAND-AID Brand Adhesive Bandages, Dr Andrew Rochford, and asked him to share his tips on how to best treat your children’s injuries.
Because you know, one small blip with mummy being wrong is not all bad. And now we’ll all know the right way to treat those cuddle-requiring slip-ups.
Here, Dr Andrew Rochford answers my tough-as matron-mummy questions.
Q. What are the biggest misconceptions around treating children’s scrapes, cuts and injuries?
A. “Children are often an injury waiting to happen as they run, skip, swing and bounce around at full-speed. When children have a wound which is more serious than a small cut or scrape, but not concerning enough to require a medical appointment, the majority of Australian parents treat it incorrectly, prolonging the healing process and creating broader impacts on their children’s health.
“One of the biggest misconceptions is that wounds should “air” to heal faster, but evidence shows that this is an outdated approach and can lead to an increased risk of infection.”
Q. What should we teach our children about scabs?
A. “Scabs can naturally protect wounds once formed, so they are a good signal that an injury is healing, however according to this new research, more than half of Australians admit they can’t resist scratching a scab which can lead to a greater chance of permanent scarring. If your child develops a scab, it is important that they don’t scratch them off. Hydrocolloid uses moist wound healing to lock-in the body’s natural restorative power, protecting against germs and scarring and is a far better way for your childrens injusries to heal.”
Q. What are your top tips for treating children’s injuries?
- “Wash your hands with soap and water before tending to their wounds.
- Wash the skin injury clean with antibacterial soap or ointment.
- To stop any bleeding, use a clean cloth or gauze and put pressure on the wound for a few minutes. Cleaning any dirt or debris out from a cut will help it heal quickly and lower the chance of infection.
- “Treat wound with Hydrocolloid bandages and leave these on until it’s completely healed to reduce chance of scarring. Ensure bandages have cushioning to reduce pain and protect the wound, and use a bandage big enough so that it sticks to the skin surrounding the wound, not the actual wound.
- “Wounds are more likely to heal if they’re treated with moist rather than dry dressings. This also stops the forming of a dry scab, which can cause scarring.
- “Apply sunscreen to the healed wound as SPF will help reduce discolouration and help scarring fade quickly.”
This article was written in collaboration with Band-Aid. Image by: Daiga Ellaby.