Minor Burn Treatment Questions and Answers
For minor burns that do require medical attention, an urgent care clinic like ours at Immediate Care of Oklahoma is an excellent place to go to receive quick, thorough, and effective medical care for your burn. For more information, call us now or schedule an appointment online. We have convenient locations to serve you in Oklahoma City, OK.
No matter how minor a burn is, it should be treated with care so that it can heal properly. If not, infection can set in and make to situation much worse. Not all minor burns require medical attention. However, here at Immediate Care of Oklahoma, our doctors and medical professionals would be happy to evaluate your burn and provide any necessary treatment to help the burn heal.
What is a minor burn?
A minor burn is when the outer and underlying layers of skin are damaged from chemical, electrical, radiation, or thermal exposure. As such, minor burns consist of both first-degree and second-degree burns, also known as superficial and partial-thickness burns, respectively. There is some grey area with regard to the severity of second-degree burns, as some second-degree burns are more severe than others. Examples of a minor burn could include sunburns, scalds from hot liquids, or electrical burns.
With that in mind, symptoms of a minor burn could include any of the following:
- Dark brown, dark red, or white color to the burned skin
- Skin sensitivity
- Wet appearance to the burn
When should you see a doctor for a minor burn?
While many minor burns can be cared for at home without medical attention, some burns require more care and medical treatment. You should see a doctor for a minor burn if you are experiencing any of the following symptoms:
- Burn or large blister that does not heal within two weeks
- Occurs on the face, major joint, hands, buttocks, groin, genitalia, or is larger than three inches in diameter
- New and unexplained symptoms
- Significant scarring as the burn heals
- Signs of infection, which could include fever, increased pain, redness, swelling, swollen lymph nodes, oozing, or red streaks running away from the burn toward the heart
How long does a minor burn take to heal?
A minor burn can take anywhere from a couple of days to several weeks to heal completely, depending on the depth, size, and location of the burn. If complications occur with the burn, such as infection, it can take longer for it to heal.
How is a minor burn treated?
Treatment for a minor burn varies according to the severity of the burn and whether it is infected or not. If the burn is infected, antibiotics will likely be required to fight off the infection. The antibiotic may be administered through a topical cream, intravenously (IV), or orally as a pill. If the burn is not infected but requires medical treatment, some treatment options could include any of the following:
- Bandages and dressings to prevent infection or further injury to the wound
- Burn creams and ointments that prevent infection and help the wound to close
- Cooling the burn with cool water
- Non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) for pain relief, such as ibuprofen (Advil) or acetaminophen (Tylenol)
- Tetanus shot, if the patient has not received theirs within the past five years
For more information about the treatment for minor burns or to see one of our doctors for a minor burn at Immediate Care of Oklahoma, we welcome you to give us a call or visit one of our seven clinics for a walk-in appointment. We serve patients from West Moore OK, Norman (HealthPlex) OK, Norman (24th) OK, Edmond OK, Yukon OK, I-240 & Sooner RD OK, Tecumseh OK, and Bethany OK.