How to Treat an Infected Burn

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Burns are serious injuries that must be handled delicately and carefully. If a burn area becomes infected, the infection can spread and become much more serious than the original burn. You can take a number of steps to treat an infected burn.

Things You'll Need

  • Antibacterial ointment
  • Cotton pads
  • Gauze
  • Aspirin or other pain reliever

Treating an Infected Burn

Cover the wound with a medical-grade cotton pad.

Wrap the wound in gauze to hold the cotton pad securely, but not so tight as to affect circulation.

Change the gauze and cotton at least every two days.

Clean the wound regularly and gently with soap and cool water. Apply antibacterial ointment.

Take aspirin or non-aspirin pain reliever as needed to reduce pain, but do not exceed the manufacturer's directions or doctor recommendation.

If pain or infection persists, see a doctor immediately.

Tips & Warnings

  • To avoid getting an infection, make sure your burn area is clean and protected. Wash the area gently with soap and warm water, not hot or cold. Do not attempt to burst any blisters that may have formed; they will go away on their own. Wear light fabrics because abrasive, heavy wools or cottons may rub against the wound and expose it to infection.
  • Do not apply butter to a burn. It slows the healing process and can actually promote infection.

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