August 19, 2023

How to Take Care of a Turf Burn

Turf burn is a painful injury that often occurs on the knees, elbows, and arms of people who play sports. It is not a thermal injury caused by heat; rather, it is a result of friction and shearing of the skin from contact with synthetic turf fields. A turf burn is typically not as serious as a thermal injury; however, it requires proper home treatment to ensure that the wound heals without infection and does not become a scar.

Immediately after a turf burn injury, apply pressure to the area to stop bleeding. Use a clean cloth or sterile gauze. Once bleeding stops, wash the wound with water or saline solution and remove dirt, debris, and grass from the wound. This is not pleasant, but it is necessary to prevent infections. After cleaning the wound, apply an antiseptic ointment or rub on aloe vera. This is a natural antiseptic that also provides a cooling sensation and reduces inflammation.

It is important to change the dressing on a turf burn regularly. A new occlusive dressing will keep the wound moist and encourage healing. Occlusive dressings are available at pharmacies and range from adhesive films to waterproof bandages. When a new dressing is applied, make sure the abrasion is completely covered to protect it from further irritation and to prevent scabbing and scarring. It is also a good idea to periodically check the wound for early signs of infection. These may include extreme redness, pain, or pus. If you see any of these symptoms, it is a sign that the wound is not healing properly and should be seen by a medical professional.


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