Our skin acts as the first line of defense as it protects our vital organs by enveloping them. Small cuts or scrapes can breach this defense and open the way in for infection causing micro-organisms. There are two basic types of infections: localized and systemic.
How Do You Know When a Cut is Infected?
It is very common to scrape or cut yourself and most of the time, it means nothing to worry about. In a day or two, the cut heals on its own. However, when it starts giving you pain because of infection it is a cause of worry.
Inspect the cut for redness or swelling, in and around the injury. You can also touch the skin around it to know whether it is warm. These, along with the fever and swollen lymph nodes in the area, indicate that the cut has become infected. Furthermore, there will be thick yellow, green or gray-white pus or discharge from the wound. The presence of pus in the cut is a sign that the infection has advanced from the stage of a scrape just being the infiltration of micro-organisms. Localized infection is observed, when the skin is cut and the wound has become infected. If proper steps are not taken to treat it, the organism causing it can spread with the blood flow to other part of the body. This is a case of systemic infection.
Once you are aware that there is an infected cut, you must clean it. You can use running water from the tap. You can also use hydrogen peroxide, iodine or other antiseptics, after consulting your doctor.
At this stage, it is important to cure the cut and prevent the localized infection from developing into a systemic infection. You can do so, by using antibiotics for the cuts. Antibacterial or antibiotic creams can be applied topically, to control the infection and heal the wound. Use a sterile gauze and adhesive tapes to cover the site and prevent clothes, shoes, or any other things from rubbing against the cut. Knowing how to treat cuts and scrapes can definitely be of help. Check it daily for 3 or 4 days. If the infection is getting bad get in touch with your doctor who is fully qualified to help you get rid of a systemic infection, if it comes to that.
The following self-care measures may be followed at home to reduce the discomfort.
• Honey: Honey has been used to cure infections by the man, for thousands of years. It has antibiotic properties as good as modern antibiotics. It is a formidable home remedy for wound care, especially, to fight off staph infections. Apply a drop of honey on the infected cut and cover it with a sterile gauze.
• Garlic: How about using garlic? Garlic has antibiotic, antifungal as well as antiviral properties because of the hydrogen peroxide in it. It helps the immune system in its tasks of controlling infections. Raw garlic juice is harsh on the cuts, hence, apply one part garlic juice mixed with three parts of water to the cut and cover it using sterile gauze.
• Turmeric Powder: Turmeric is antiseptic and also has antibacterial properties because of fluoride present in it. Sprinkle turmeric powder directly on the infected cut and cover it.
It is very common to wound yourself on the foot. It can be a minor scrape or a 1-inch long superficial cut that you have received, when you landed awkwardly on a pointed stone or a surface. It is hard to keep the feet out of such troubles. They support us every time we move from one place to another, while walking, jogging and running. This is why we need to take care of them. It is easy to use the home remedies and take care of an infected cut. All in all, knowing about the first aid can come in handy.
Disclaimer: The information provided in this article is solely for educating the reader. It is not intended to be a substitute for the advice of a medical expert.