The cuts

Wounds, injuries, cuts, these accidents are numerous, just as numerous as the objects that caused them: scissors, knives, razor blades, etc…

The severity of wounds varies according to their depth, size and location.

The small cut caused by the razor blade is usually benign. On the other hand, the deep wound of the do-it-yourselfer who hurts himself with his circular saw is more worrying. In this case, the cut can reach vessels, tendons and nerves. Cuts and facial wounds sometimes expose aesthetic damage.

Any wound is an open door to infection, especially if it is soiled and contains debris (gravel, wood or metal shavings).

What you need to do

Any wound, no matter how small, must be cleaned up. Either simply with soap and water, or with a disinfectant product that your pharmacist will advise you to use.

All soiled wounds must be cleaned of foreign particles (gravel, broken glass, etc.). Not only can these debris be a source of infection, but they also interfere with proper healing.

To stop the bleeding from a small razor cut, simply compress the wound for a few moments with a compress or use a haemostat. In the case of a cut on the finger, after rinsing it under water the bleeding is stopped by compressing the wound with a clean cloth. The wound can be covered with a compress, sterile gauze or an adhesive bandage, which is useful when the wound is likely to be exposed to soiling.

Alternatively, the cleaned and disinfected wound can be left to breathe, which in some cases prevents the wound from macerating under a makeshift dressing that is quickly soiled and forgotten to be changed.

In all cases of wounds or injuries, it is essential to check whether the tetanus vaccination is still valid.

Talk to your pharmacist who will be able to inform you. Serious wounds should be covered with a clean cloth and the injured person should be taken quickly to the nearest hospital.

What you should not do

Do not apply a violent antiseptic, such as 90° alcohol, to an open wound. Not only does alcohol burn, but it is no more effective than other antiseptics. (see Antiseptics)

It is best not to use cotton wool to clean a wound. Cotton fibres may remain in the wound. It is best to use sterile compresses.

Do not put talcum powder on a wound.

Do not cover a wound with antibiotic cream without your doctor’s advice. Antibiotics, whether in tablets, creams or any other preparation, are still drugs that must be prescribed and require medical supervision.

Antibiotics can be useful to improve the healing of a stitch in certain wounds. Especially those located on the face, which, if not properly treated, can leave an unsightly scar.

It is necessary to bring the edges of a wound close together to ensure good healing. There are now “adhesive strips” available that can be used to suture the wound. However, the wound must be located on an immobile area of the body, otherwise the adhesive suture cannot hold. Ask your pharmacist for more information and he will be able to advise you.

A few precautionary tips

There are certain precautions that can prevent many injuries to young children:

  • Turn off and unplug household appliances.
  • Beware of fans that should not be accessible to children.
  • Dispose of damaged toys that may present some danger.
  • keep sharp objects, especially tool and sewing boxes, out of the reach of children.
  • give your young children unbreakable dishes.