How to Reduce the Pain Caused by a Burn. The pain associated with a burn, especially a particularly severe one, is perhaps one of the most intense forms of pain. The pain typically lasts longer than other kinds of pain. Fortunately, a number of steps can be taken to help reduce the amount of pain the patient feels from a burn injury.
Things You'll Need
- Ibuprofen or acetaminophen
- Cool water
- Clean towel
Assess the Burn Injury
Recognize the symptoms of a burn including pain, red or peeling skin, white or charred skin (usually present in the most severe or third-degree burns) and swelling. Secondary symptoms may also include shock and numbness, particularly in severe burns affecting both the skin and the underlying tissue.
Determine whether the patient has received a minor or severe burn by observing the affected skin. A first-degree burn is generally considered minor and only affects the topmost layer of skin, causing pain and redness. More severe burns include second or third-degree burns, going deeper than the epidermis and affecting a larger area of skin.
Treat Pain Caused by Minor Burns
Run cool water over the burned skin if the skin is unbroken. You may also soak it in a cool water bath to help alleviate the pain.
Avoid using ice to reduce the pain caused by a minor burn. A rapid cooling of the skin may cause additional damage.
Soak the burned area for at least 5 minutes. You may also use a clean towel, dipped in cold water and applied to the affected skin, to help reduce the pain.
Cover the burn with a sterile bandage or dressing. This will help prevent further pain by protecting the skin from friction and pressure.
Administer the appropriate dosage of ibuprofen or acetaminophen to the patient.