Growing up with the age-old adage of which came first the chicken or the egg? Depending on when you were born the chicken, or the egg could be replaced with do wounds heal better covered with a bandage or with exposed to the air in order to let the wound breathe? It's possible that a relative or grandparent may have told you that if you let a wound go untreated, a scab will form over it and it will heal more quickly. But is it really the case? Do open wounds require air to heal properly? Read on to find out.
In contrast to the common belief, wounds cannot heal without the presence of moisture rather than air. The healing process can be slowed down if a wound is exposed while it is being treated. So, why it is important to cover a wound? The reason why is this- After the bleeding has been stopped and the wound has been cleaned, you should then apply a clean bandage.
The wound will not heal because air drying it out also encourages cell death rather than healing. When a wound is covered, the natural moisture that helps keep cells alive is preserved for longer. An open wound will attract dust and grime from the surrounding environment, compare that to a wound that is allowed to heal in an atmosphere that is damp, the likelihood of it leaving a scar is reduced. A wound that is exposed to the elements is more likely to be painful as well and it will take longer for a wound that is exposed to heal.
So, how should you care for a superficial cut or wound? You should seek medical attention for cuts that are deeper, but most minor cuts and scrapes may be treated at home. You really need to:
- Scrub the area using a mild detergent and some water.
- Apply topical antibiotic ointment, such as Neosporin, should be applied to the affected area.
- Wrap a bandage around the area.
- Every day, apply a fresh bandage.
When you change the bandage, apply a small amount of petroleum jelly (such as Vaseline) to the wound to ensure that it remains moist. When should you remove the dressing from a wound? A wound should be kept wet and covered for roughly five days after it has been treated. Every day, you should change the bandage, some wounds might require the bandage to be changed multiple time in a day. If the cut reopens or begins bleeding again when you change the bandage, reapply petroleum jelly to the affected area and wrap the wound back up.
Your wound could heal with or without a scab, which is a protective covering that the skin creates over the wound as it heals. This might happen regardless of anything you do to treat the wound. However, the risk of developing a scab is reduced if you keep the area covered and moist during the healing process. And even if you do wind up with a scab, it will heal much faster if you remember this - It is essential to apply a small amount of petroleum jelly to wounds on a daily basis in order to keep them moist. A bandage used in conjunction with petroleum jelly, will prevent further dirt and bacteria from entering the wound in addition to keeping the wound damp, thus allowing the wound to heal faster.