The skin is the largest organ of the body and functions as the very first line of defense of the body. Any type of lesion that injures the body provides an opening for bacteria and other microorganisms to enter and infect the body. These injuries normally affect the scalp, arms, and legs of a person. These injuries are more common in patients with an underlying medical condition like diabetes mellitus.
Abrasions, medically and dermatology speaking, is a skin lesion or wound brought about by damage to the superficial layer of the skin. The wound is no deeper than the epidermal layer of the skin. It is otherwise known as a graze or a scrape. Bleeding is not uncommon with abrasions, and if it is present then it is minimal. Abrasions most commonly occur when there is the rubbing of one’s skin with a rough surface which causes the tearing away of the upper layers of the skin.
Causes of Abrasions
Abrasions may be classified differently according to the affected surface and to the type of material that comes into contact with the patient’s body. Abrasions or scratches that may occur when a foreign body damages the outermost layer of the eye are called a corneal abrasion. This term has been made because the cornea functions similarly as the skin of a person. Other causes of skin abrasions are falls, accidents that cause road rash, and sports injuries.
Abrasions Signs and Symptoms
The signs and symptoms of an abrasion are also commonly seen with other types of skin lesions. These signs and symptoms are pain, redness, swelling, rash, and sometimes bleeding. If ever the signs and symptoms worsen then a consultation with a physician is greatly recommended. Worsening signs and symptoms are pus formation, fever, and extensive redness and swelling.
Treatment of an abrasion usually starts with cleaning the wound and going through a process called debridement or basically the removal of any debris present on the surface of the affected area. An antibiotic is usually applied to prevent infection and to keep the wound moist. Sterile dressing should be maintained to keep the wound from drying because this interferes with the healing process of the wound. A topical pain reliever is optional as some abrasions are quite painful and unbearable.
Home Remedies for Abrasions
Home remedies that a family can do for a patient with an abrasion are to keep the wound clean and free of debris. The first step would be to wash the wound with soap and water. Taking note that dirt and other debris should be removed as this will aid in the healing process of the wound. Be sure to change the dressing at least twice or thrice daily for two to three weeks. This is the usual duration that an abrasion would last before full recovery. Some would treat the wound with some type of solution that has been infused with some herbal oil. These herbs and plants are lavender, thyme, marigold flowers, parsley, onion juice, witch hazel, sage, or geranium leaves.