Using the correct method to properly dress a wound is essential for wound healing and can even speed up healing. When dressing a wound at home, there a few very important things to take into account before you begin such as properly cleaning and disinfecting the wound, and assessing the wound to decide what type of dressing would be most suitable. 

To ensure that you are always prepared for minor cuts and scrapes that can be treated from the comfort of your own home as well as changing dressings on larger wounds that have been initially tended to by a doctor, having a fully equipped first aid kit is a great idea. Certain medical supplies are crucial to have in your first aid kit, such as plasters, bandages, and other dressings, disinfectant ointment, antiseptic creams, tweezer, and a few other items. You can purchase almost all your medical supplies from an accredited online retailer such as Save Rite Medical.

For your convenience, we have put together a simple guide, consisting of vital steps that you should follow when properly dressing a wound. 

Step 1: Identify the wound

It is vital that you make sure you can dress the wound at home by identifying the wound. If the wound is too deep, it may require stitches from a healthcare practitioner. Additionally, wounds that are squirting blood, bleeding uncontrollably, head wounds, and neck wounds should also be assessed by a healthcare practitioner. 

If the wound is minor and there is no need to consult a healthcare practitioner, then you can proceed to the next step in tending to the wound at home.

Step 2: Clean the wound

You can begin cleaning the wound using water and be sure to rinse the wound thoroughly before dabbing the wound dry using a clean disposable towel or cotton wool. Ensure that the wound is completely dry. If there are particles in the wound, you should use a pair of tweezers to gently remove the particles and rinse the wound again to ensure that it is completely dirt free.

Step 3: Disinfect 

Once you have thoroughly rinsed and dried the wound, use cotton wool to apply an adequate amount of disinfectant ointment or antiseptic cream. This will ensure that the wound will not get infected during the healing process. Infections can be extremely painful and will also slow down the healing process. If the wound does get infected, it is essential that you treat the infection according to the instructions of a healthcare practitioner. 

Step 4: Dress the wound with the appropriate dressing

There are quite a few different types of dressings to choose from, and it is vital that you use an appropriate dressing to properly dress the wound. 

Tegaderm dressings is a transparent, waterproof film dressing that can be used to dress wounds that need moisture while still being waterproof and therefore, wounds such as ulcers, minor burns, and surgical wounds can be dressed using Tegaderm dressings. 

The Tegaderm dressing can be easily applied by removing the backing paper to reveal the adhesive side, ensure that you leave the paper frame to hold onto while applying it to the wound. Gently place the dressing over the center of the wound and press down, remembering to press out any air bubbles. Remove the paper frame and press down gently.

Hydrocolloid dressings are best to use for dressings that emit liquid such as ulcers, necrotic wounds, and also burns. Because this dressing has a waterproof backing and it contains gel-forming agents, it provides a moist healing environment for these types of wounds. 

To apply this dressing you will need to warm it between your hands which will allow it to properly adhere to your skin. Remove the backing and fold the dressing in half and apply by starting at the center of the wound.

Cloth dressings can be used for minor injuries such as cuts and grazes and they are generally the most common type of dressings used. 

When applying a cloth dressing, hold the dressing down gently at least 2cm from the wound site and then you should wrap the dressing around the area. A safety pin or a piece of adhesive tape can be used to hold the end of the cloth dressing down.

Is a first aid kit important?

In order to be as prepared as possible, a first aid kit is vital and keeping a first aid kit at home that contains all the essential and important medical supplies will ensure that you are prepared to deal with minor injuries without having to consult a healthcare practitioner. Online medical suppliers such as Save Rite Medical provide almost every medical supply you can think of, from disposable medical supplies to durable medical devices and opting to purchase the needed items for your first aid kit online is most definitely a convenient choice. Furthermore, it is also extremely important that you are aware of general first aid practices such as proper wound dressing, burn care and other minor injuries. By having general first aid knowledge you will know when you need to consult a healthcare practitioner and how to tend to even serious wounds before you can get to the emergency room.