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Types of Burns and How to Treat Them

Burns are injuries to the skin and in some cases, they are so severe that they cause the cells of the skin and tissue beneath to die. They often occur because the affected skin was exposed to extreme temperatures, but can also occur as the result of electrical shock or contact with a harmful chemical. Although minor burns can be treated at home and do not have a lasting effect on the victim, more substantial burns can require extensive medical treatment.

When a substantial burn is the result of a party’s negligence, such as a burn caused by contact with a hot engine in a car accident or an electrical burn due to exposed, frayed wiring in a public place, the victim may seek compensation for his or her damages through a personal injury claim. Familiarize yourself with the types of burn you can potentially suffer and how to treat them to avoid pain and long-term damage. All burns are classified by severity as first, second, and third degree burns.

Heat Burns

The most common type of burn is a heat burn, which is a burn caused by exposure to high temperatures.

To treat a first degree burn, soak the affected area in cool water to reduce swelling. Then, run an antibiotic ointment or skincare product designed to heal the skin to the burn. In most cases, first degree burns heal easily. To treat a second degree burn, greater care is needed. Treat the burn as you would a first degree burn, but seek medical attention if it becomes infected. For a third degree burn, seek medical attention as soon as possible.

Chemical Burns

For a chemical burn, always seek medical attention. After calling 911, flush the affected area with cool water. If you are not the victim, put on gloves or an apron to do this. Remove clothing and jewelry from the affected area unless it is stuck to the skin. If the container of the chemical is available, read it for instructions about handling its burns. Do not try to neutralize the chemical with another chemical.

Electrical Burns

Like with a chemical burn, call 911 immediately and remove all clothing and jewelry from the affected area – if you can. Unplug the appliance or turn off the electrical source if possible and do not touch the victim with your hands. Instead, try to use a wooden item to nudge him or her away from the source of the electricity. If the victim is not responsive after removing him or her from the electrical source, start CPR.

Work with an Experienced La Crosse Personal Injury Lawyer

If you have suffered a burn in an accident caused by another party’s negligence, you could have grounds to file a personal injury claim to seek monetary compensation for your damages. To learn more about filing and pursuing this type of claim, speak with one of the experienced personal injury lawyers at Moen Sheehan Meyer, Ltd. We are an experienced personal injury firm that has been a part of the La Crosse community for more than 100 years.

Published October 10, 2016
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