Treatment for Burns & Scalds
- → Cool the burn under cool running water for a minimum of 10 minutes
- → Remove jewellery that may retain heat around the burn, this should to be done before swelling occurs, the casualty should do this for themselves if possible, if it is too painful, leave items in place but continue to cool the area.
- → If your first aid kit contains burn gel follow the instructions to use if appropriate but you should cool with water first.
- → Dress the area lightly with a sterile dressing
- → For chemical burns, follow the instructions on the product that has caused the burn.
- → Pop blisters
- → Remove items of clothing that are stuck to the skin
- → Do not touch the burnt area
When to go to hospital
Go to a Hospital Accident and Emergency (A&E) Department or call 999 for:
- → large or deep burns – any burn bigger than the affected person’s hand
- → full thickness burns of all sizes – these burns cause white or charred skin
- → partial thickness burns on the face, hands, arms, feet, legs or genitals – these are burns that cause blisters
- → all chemical and electrical burns
Also get medical help straight away if the person with the burn:
- → has other injuries that need treating
- → is going into shock – signs include cold clammy skin, sweating, rapid shallow breathing and weakness or dizziness
- → is pregnant
- → is over 60 years of age
- → is under 5 years of age
- → has a medical condition such as heart, lung or liver disease, or diabetes
- → has a weakened immune system (the body’s defence system), for example because of HIV or AIDS, or because they’re having chemotherapy for cancer
- → If someone has breathed in smoke or fumes, they should also seek medical attention. Some symptoms may be delayed and can include coughing, a sore throat, difficulty breathing, singed nasal hair or facial burns.