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16. Actions to Be Taken In Case of Burns or Scalds
  • Take Immediate Steps to Relieve The Pain and Prevent Infection.
  • If Necessary, Call Emergency Help as Soon as Possible.
  • Burns Are Treated According To Their Severity.
  • a. Degrees of burns
    1) First degree burns: outer skin is reddened and slightly swollen

    2) Second degree burns: under skin is also red and has blisters

    3) Third degree burns: skin is destroyed (white or charred appearance)

    b. Treatment of burns
    1) Minor burns: first degree
    (a) To reduce pain, run cold water over the burn, then immerse the burned area in a container of cold water or apply cold towels frequently.

    (b) Cover with sterile gauze or a clean bandage to prevent infection.

    (c) If the burned area is fairly large, have someone in the household contact the physician.

    (d) Notify Home Care Supervisor.

    2) Major burns: second degree
    (a) Have someone in the household contact the physician or police, fire, or emergency squad.

    (b) Immerse the burned part in cold water or apply recently laundered cloths that have been dipped in cold water.

    (c) Dry and cover with sterile gauze or a clean cloth.

    (d) If an arm or leg has been burned, raise it so that it is higher than the victim's heart.

    (e) Do not break blisters. Do not use cotton or any material with a loose fiber as a dressing. Do not apply any type of ointment or medication.

    (f) Notify Home Care Supervisor.

    3) Major burns: third degree
    (a) Have someone in the household contact the police, fire, or emergency squad.

    (b) Remove or cut away clothing from the burned area. If clothing sticks to the burn, do not pull it loose. Cut around the burned area.

    (c) Watch for respiration problems. Use rescue breathing, if necessary.

    (d) Apply a cold cloth to the face, hands, or feet, but do not immerse the burned area or apply cold packs to a large burned area because these actions may cause greater shock.

    (e) Do not apply any medications.

    (f) Follow any instructions given by the emergency team.

    (g) Notify Home Care Supervisor.

    4) Chemical burns
    (a) Have someone in the household contact the police, fire, or emergency squad.

    (b) Wash away the chemical with large quantities of water. Use a shower or hose while removing the victim's clothing. Wash away chemical completely. Do not use a neutralizing agent (such as soap); water is more effective. Then remove clothing, taking care not to tear the skin, which may adhere to the cloth.

    (c) Cover the burned area with the cleanest available material.

    (d) Notify Home Care Supervisor.

    5) Eye burns
    (a) If the victim is wearing contact lenses, have him or her remove them at once.

    (b) Hold the eyelids open and flood the eye with water for 15 minutes.

    (c) After flooding the eye with water, ask someone in the household to contact the police, fire, or emergency squad.


    (d) Cover the eye with a sterile pad--do not use cotton--to keep the lid from moving.

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    lsb 04/15/2002