Abrasions or Grazes
Children are extremely prone to abrasions, which you may know simply as “grazes.” You’ll see it on their elbows or knees after a fall on gravel, cement, or even on the forest floor. These grazes are superficial damage to the knee and look a lot like typical rug burn, but may gently bleed and sting, causing some discomfort. While a grazed knee or elbow is usually not severe in nature, it’s still uncomfortable for you or your loved ones. Generally, a scraped knee or grazed elbow will take a week or so to heal, maybe 2 to 3 weeks if it is more severe.¹
To care for your abrasion or grazed knee:
- Wash your hands.
- Rinse the grazed body part with sterile or fresh water. Most grazed elbows or knees won’t have debris in the wound that can’t be removed with rinsing, however, if increased water pressure does not remove the debris, remove it with clean, sterile tweezers.
- Disinfect the graze using an antiseptic. If you are using an alcohol-based solution, this part may sting, so if you’re helping a child, warn them that they will feel uncomfortable for a moment, but that it will not last long. Allow them to hold onto you while you apply disinfectant over the minor cut or abrasion, or dab at it gently with an alcohol soaked sterile cotton pad. Another option is to use mundicare® Antiseptic Gel or Spray to clean the wound. It won’t sting, and uses natural melaleuca oil as an antiseptic to help reduce the risk of infection.
- Use an appropriate, breathable wound dressing for a cut or scrape and change it when it becomes soaked through or is uncomfortable.
¹ How a Scrape Heals-Topic Overview. WebMD. 2016. Available at: http://www.webmd.com/first-aid/tc/how-a-scrape-heals-topic-overview. Accessed June 15, 2016.