Steam burns are quite common and most of these accidents happen in the kitchen. These burns occur when your skin is exposed to rising steam, causing the skin to become red and irritated. Evaluation of the burn should be done before giving first aid. Superficial burns that appear as small, painful patches can be treated at home, but severe damage that causes numbness in the burnt area need medical attention. Remember, even a little exposure to steam can cause serious damage, so act quickly.
How to Treat Steam Burn
Apply Cold Compress
Cool water will always serve as one effective home remedy for burned skin. It will dramatically reduce the pain and prevent the burn from spreading. Don't apply ice directly to the burn because it restricts blood flow to the wound and damages skin cells. Instead, apply cold compress or place your wound under cool water for 10 minutes or so. Use it as your first option, the moment you get a burn.
If you ask what to put on a burn caused by steam, the answer is honey. It has anti-inflammatory and antibacterial properties that promote healing. Small, non-serious burns usually heal faster when you dab some honey and wrap them with gauze. It is often more effective than an antibiotic cream because it draws out fluids and cleans the wound.
Minor burns will become itchy as they start to heal. Try oatmeal for relief! You simply need to put it into a tub full of lukewarm water and soak your wound for 15-20 minutes. Be sure to not clean it with a cloth but let it dry in the air, as this leaves a thin coating of oatmeal on your skin and triggers healing.
Rinse With Salt Water
Prepare a mixture containing 8 ounces of water and 1/2 teaspoon of salt. Rinse your wound carefully with this solution every hour or so. This is especially useful for treating mouth burns.
Using the tannic acid found in black tea will help immensely to draw heat from a minor burn. You can collect the tea by putting a couple of tea bags under a spout of cool water and collect the tea in a cup. You can also make a mixture using 4-5 tea bags, 4 cups of boiling water and 2 cups of fresh mint leaves. Let the mixture cool off completely before dabbing it on the burn sites.
Soak in Milk
Milk is one great choice to soothe a minor burn. Simply soak your wound in milk for 15-20 minutes to relieve pain. Alternatively, you can soak a cloth in milk and place it on the affected burn site for pain relief. Don't use the same cloth repeatedly. Repeat the process every few hours for better results.
Use Plantain Leaves
If you want to learn how to treat a steam burn effectively, you may have to use what people in ancient times would use that is plantain leaves. These green weedy plants, native to Asia and Europe, are now ubiquitous in all parts of the world, but don't mix it up with a banana-like vegetable that also named plantain. Plantain consists of irigoid glycosides, mucilage and tannins, which give its leaves mild antimicrobial, anti-inflammatory and anti-hemorrhagic properties. Simply crush some fresh leaves and apply the juice directly on the affected site for pain relief and quick healing.
More Ways of Treating Burns
There are so many things in your home that can provide great relief to your burn. If you want to know more ways of treating burns by yourself, check this video out:
When to See a Doctor
Although minor burns heal without a serious treatment, you may have to see a doctor when the wound doesn't heal in a few weeks. You should seek medical attention if the burn is extensive or you don't know how severe it is. If you witness infection with increased pain, swelling, redness or oozing, you may need tetanus or booster shot.
How to Treat Burn Blisters Caused by Steam
Applying cool compresses or soaking your wound in cool water will help with blisters. Then smear some antibacterial ointment or honey on the burnt sites. After that, you need to cover the blisters with a bandage or some other type of dressing to prevent infection. The most important point to bear in mind is that the bandage should not be so tight that the air supply is cut off. It is a good idea to use sterile gauze and secure it with surgical tape, but moleskin works too.
Even after first aid treatment, those burn blisters will hurt like hell. A doze of ibuprofen or acetaminophen will help minimize the discomfort. Accompanied with an OTC cream, these oral medications will work better. Just remember to use topical treatment only when the skin has cooled and no open wounds are present. Second-degree burns larger than a couple of inches are best left to a doctor. Similarly, if you have burns on the feet, genitals or buttock, you need to consult with a healthcare professional.
- Ensure you have a fire extinguisher in the kitchen;
- Be sure to use potholders and oven mitts to avoid steam burn;
- Never leave a child alone in the kitchen and always put a childproof lock on your oven door;
- Be careful when working in your kitchen and set the temperature of your hot water heater below 120 degrees F.