It is nearly impossible for most kids to avoid cuts and scrapes at some point in their active little lives. Some TLC from mom or dad is usually all it takes to get them feeling better, but, it is important to know how to get those small wounds healing properly. We want to offer some FAQs about cuts and scrapes with kids!
How to treat cuts and scrapes?
- Wash it!
- Gently cleanse the wound for 5 minutes with water and soap. Cleaning the cut or scrape will help to prevent infection. If your kid is really uncomfortable during this process, you may try to soak the wound in warm water to ease the pain.
- Cover it!
- Apply an antibacterial ointment and cover it with gauze until it is fully healed. ‘You may need to change this covering daily, or as is needed if it is getting dirty or comes off.
How do I know if it needs stitches?
- A gaping open cut
- It is more than 1/2 inch long
- Seems deep with visible dark red muscle or yellowish fat
- It is in a cosmetically sensitive area
- If it becomes red, swollen, or starts draining fluid you need to see a doctor right away
Small cuts that do not fit these qualifications may not need stitches but still may benefit from steri strips.
How soon after an injury does my child need to see an Urgent Care, Doctor, or Pediatrician?
If you have deiced that the injury needs to be closed by stitches, sutures, steri strips, or staples follow these guidelines for when to seek medical help.
- Most cuts need closing within 24 hours after the initial injury, but some need closing sooner
- It is the safest option to wait no more than 8 hours after the injury
- If you decide to wait it out before seeking medical help, be sure to wash it well and cover it immediately.
- Always remember that if there is extreme pain, redness, swelling, drainage, or severe bleeding to seek help immediately.
SOURCE: American Academy of Pediatrics
Need more tips? Our Urgent Care for children is geared towards helping you succeed when it comes to your kid’s health. Check out our blog for more great advice!