For most of us, minor bumps, bruises, cuts and scrapes are part of the natural order of life. Especially when you have children, scrapes and cuts are especially likely to occur. In most cases, the scrape will not extend too far into the skin. While scrapes usually produce only a small amount of blood, they may ooze a pinkish fluid.
Scrapes are abrasions or skin wounds that rub or tear off the skin.
Most scrapes will occur in the warm weather seasons, when skin is more exposed. The scrape is usually the result of a fall but can occur anytime the skin is rubbed against a hard surface.
What to Do
The first step is to stop the bleeding. The person treating the wound should wash their hands well with soap and water, use medical gloves if available. If you have no gloves use clean cloth, clean plastic bags or other material between your hands and the wound.
Ask the injured person to apply direct pressure on the wound if possible, and elevate the area. Use your bare hands to apply direct pressure only as a last resort.
Clean the Wound
Remove any visible objects in the wound after the bleeding has been controlled. Remove or cut clothing from around the wound, remove any jewelry to prevent blood flow problems from swelling.
Apply direct pressure for a full 15 minutes, use a clock or timer as 15 minutes seems like an enormously long time. Don’t peek; it will seep through the cloth if it is still bleeding. This can be done up to 3 times at 15 minutes each. If bleeding continues after 45 minutes, seek medical care.
Determine if there is damage that requires medical attention (deep wounds, excessive bleeding, joint, bone damage). Clean the wound with mild soap and water or hydrogen peroxide. Determine if a tetanus shot is needed.
Cleaning Wound Remedies
Oil of lavender is said to increase the rate of tissue healing and also to kill germs. Tea tree oil is thought to minimize scar tissue formation and disinfect the wound.
Herbal tinctures made from Echinacea, marigold and myrrh can also be used to clean the wound. Comfrey herb ointments are said to increase the healing process.
Garlic juice has been shown to have healing effects similar to 1% penicillin solutions but can cause skin irritations, so testing in small areas is important.
Historically sugar and honey have been used to treat wounds. Sugar is believed to have natural antibiotic principles. However, in the 1970s and 1980s this process was largely believed to cause more harm than good. The current medical thinking is that sugar and honey can easily over saturate, creating a wet environment which can actually increase bacterial growth.
Any topical application to an open wound runs the risk of infection, bacterial growth and damage. Cleaning the wound is the most important part of the process, if cleaning the wound and dressing the wound does not stop the bleeding; seek medical attention.