When to go to the ER: Serious burns
Most of us, if not all of us have suffered a burn at one time or the other. This is because, in our daily activities, either at home or at work, we are always dealing with equipment and tools that could potentially cause burns. From cooking, to ironing our clothes and operating certain machinery at work, such as welding machinery, we are always liable to suffering burns. However, as discussed in detail over at the excellent frontlineer.com, all burns are not born equal. This is because burns vary in severity, and are categorized as 1st, 2nd, 3rd and 4th degree burns in order of increasing severity. 1st degree burns are minor given that they only involve the superficial layer of the skin and therefore don’t require a visit to the ER as they can be handled at home with home remedies or at an urgent care facility if you feel like you need to have them looked at. However, when dealing with 2nd degree burns, while there are those that can still be handled at home, there are those that require a visit to the ER to be attended to. 3rd and 4th degree burns are severe and should always be handled at the ER. It is therefore important to know when to go to the ER for 2nd degree burns as well as the signs that indicate that you have suffered a 3rd or even 4th degree burn and need to go to the ER, so that you can get treatment, something this article, with the help of the subject matter experts over at frontlineer.com, will look to help with.
2nd degree burns, unlike 1st degree burns, extend past the skin and into the dermal layer, and are also therefore known as partial thickness burns as covered in detail over at the excellent frontlineer.com. Symptoms of 2nd degree burns include pain, swelling, blistering as well as reddening or whitening of the skin. While there are certain 2nd degree burns that can be handled at home or at an urgent care clinic, you need to know which ones to go to the ER for, something we are going to highlight. The first thing that will determine whether or not you need to go to the ER for your 2nd degree burns is the size of the burn. If the burn is larger than 3 inches, that is, it is larger than the palm of your hand, then you should head over to an ER and have it attended to. Such extensive burns are not only very painful, they also come with increased chances of complications and should be handled at an ER like the excellent frontlineer.com. Another factor that will determine whether or not you will go to the ER for your 2nd degree burn is the location of the burn. If the burn is located in a sensitive area such as the face, eyes, ears, hands, feet, genital area, buttocks as well as on major joints like the knee, then you should also head over to the ER for your burn, as per the subject matter experts over at frontlineer.com. Such burns come with increased likelihood of permanent damage and even disability and should be taken seriously.
The degree of the burn should also determine whether or not you need to go to the ER for your burn. Signs of 1st degree burns include reddening of the skin and mild pain while signs of 2nd degree burns include come with blisters, as explained over at frontlineer.com. These can be handled at home, unless they are 2nd degree burns and fall in the categories discussed above. However, 3rd and 4th degree burns should always lead to a visit to the ER. 3rd degree burns are burns where the damage extends past the skin and the dermis and into the muscle tissue while 4th degree burns extend all the way to the bone and therefore cause extensive tissue destruction and can lead to amputations and even death. As discussed over at frontlineer.com, given that 3rd and 4th degree burns cause damage to surrounding nerves, the burns themselves are usually not painful. Therefore, if you suffer a burn and it is not painful, then you should head over to the ER as this may be a sign of a 3rd or 4th degree burn. However, given that most 3rd and 4th degree burns rarely occur in isolation and are usually surrounded by 2nd degree burns, you may experience severe pain and therefore pain may not be a reliable indicator when it comes to such burns. Therefore, another sign to look out for when it comes to such burns is charring or whitish marks on the skin. If you notice such, you should head over to the ER as soon as possible.
You should also go to the ER for serious burns if you notice signs of an infection on your burn wound. According to frontlineer.com, these include increasing pain, swelling, reddening and red streaks emanating from the wound as well as a foul odor or liquid coming out of the wound. An infected burn should always be taken seriously before the infection spreads and worsens. While the above burns focus mainly on thermal burns, burns can also be as a result of chemicals and electricity. Here, as per the subject matter experts over at frontlineer.com, if you suffer a chemical or electric burn, you should head over to the ER as soon as possible. Chemical burns due to alkaline products like drain cleaners are particularly nasty and can be quite serious. Electrical burns, like getting electrocuted or struck by lightning, can also cause serious internal injuries and one should always be examined in the ER in such as case.
Remember, for more information on this and other related topics as well as for the best emergency services in the above situations, then the excellent frontlineer.com is the place to head over to.