Any type of burn can be incredibly dangerous and painful, but they can't all be treated the same way. In order to properly care for your injury, you need to know what caused it. In the case of chemical burns, you need to take special care to make sure that the injury doesn't worsen or spread. However, you may not be able to immediately recognize a chemical burn. In cases where you are sure here are the steps you should take:
- Take precautions: Chemical burns are especially dangerous because of their ability to spread. Before you begin treating yourself, make sure that you have the proper protection, whether that comes in the form of gloves, a mask, etc. in order to keep the burn from spreading to other parts of your body.
- Clean off the chemical that caused your burn: If the burn is caused by a chemical powder, or other dry substance, brush off any material that remains on your skin. If it's a wet chemical, grab a towel and dab at the moisture - take extra care to only dab and not rub. If you rub the chemical, you increase the risk of it burning the surrounding skin. Make sure you safely dispose of any material that came in contact with the chemical.
- Remove any contaminated materials: Whether it's a necklace or a neckerchief, if it came in contact with the chemical causing the burn it needs to be removed and safely disposed of immediately.
- Rinse the affected area: Run the burn under a low pressure stream of cold water for at least 10 minutes.
- Bandage the area: Very loosely wrap the affected area in gauze or a bandage.
Even if you aren't sure if your burn was caused by a chemical, it's better to be safe than sorry. No matter what, avoid touching or scratching the injured area, and take extra care not to rub your eyes after cleaning off the burn. You really don't want those chemicals spreading to your eyes.
If your eyes come in contact with the chemicals, the burn had penetrated through the outer layer of skin, or if you are displaying signs of shock like shallow breathing, lightheadedness, or pale skin, seek medical care immediately. If you can, bring the chemical container with you or note the name of the substance in order to help the medical professionals know what treatment to give you.
If you or a loved one has suffered a chemical burn due to someone else's negligence, contact the San Antonio burn injury lawyers at the Wyatt Law Firm, Ltd. Our attorneys have been protecting the rights of our clients for over two and a half decades, and understand how to secure our clients the compensation they deserve. Visit our website for a free case consultation, or give us a call at (210) 702-2162 to set up a meeting with one of our burn injury attorneys.