First Aid

First Aid: Laceration Treatment

The skin is the largest organ of the body, so it’s no surprise that it gets more injuries than any other part of the body. Sometimes when the skin gets badly injured, it’s called a laceration.

Lacerations are tears and cuts from a sharp or rough object. They are usually shallow and come in groups, often covering an entire area of the body. Laceration treatment is fairly standard as far as first aid procedures go. If you encounter someone in need of laceration treatment, you need to act quickly to stop blood flow, decrease pain, and shorten healing time.

Be calm

Lacerations are often widespread and numerous, so the area will likely be covered in blood and torn skin. Don’t panic, though. These are usually superficial cuts, and the wounds will often look worse than they are. Lacerations are rarely deadly unless they cover a huge amount of the body, in which case you need to call emergency services immediately.
Since this probably isn’t an emergency, take the time to do things right.

Get clean towels, bandages, and other first aid gear. Wash your hands and put on plastic or rubber gloves if you have them. The person is probably at greater risk from infection than blood loss, so do as much as you can in a reasonable amount of time to make things as sterile as possible.

Wash the wounds

Gently pour a bottle of water over the lacerations, to remove some of the excess blood and grit that may have made its way into the cuts. Don’t spend too much time on this now, you’ll get back to cleaning the wound later.

Stop the bleeding

Place a clean towel, cloth, or pad of gauze over the lacerated area. Put on moderate-heavy pressure to the area. If the wound bleeds through, do not remove the initial padding; instead, place another oen on top of it. If the bleeding does not stop in about twenty minutes, take the person to a hospital.

Cleaning the wound

If the wound stops bleeding, give it a while before you mess with it. Let the blood start clotting. After twenty minutes or so of the bleeding stopping, you can start the laceration treatment. Gently wash off the drying blood with warm water, taking as much care as possible not to disturb the closing injuries.A� Once only the wounds are left, examin them for any small bits of grit or debris that might be in them. Try to wash them out. If the wounds start bleeding again slightly, don’t worry too much, that’s normal. Pour a sterilizer, such as alcohol, over the wounds. Once that dries, apply an anti-infection ointment to them.

Bandaging the wound

Follow normal first aid procedures for the final part of laceration treatment. If the wounds are widespread, then a single large bandage may be better than smaller ones.


Give the person over the counter painkillers if you have any. The person should avoid agitating the area for several days, and clean it at least once per day. If the cut was from a peice of rusty metal or an animal, then they should be checked for tetanus or rabies, respectively.

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