First Degree Burn

First degree burn treatment

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Definition of First Degree Burn

first degree burn, sunburn picture, photo of sunburn, bad sunburn

A first degree burn can be classified as a minor injury and you can treat a first degree burn at home.

As per the medical dictionary: “A mild burn produces redness of the skin and no blistering.” A 1st degree burn is superficial, that is, it affects only the

topmost layer of the skin – the epidermis.

The epidermis is a regenerative tissue and repairs itself and heals usually within a week. That’s why first-degree burns won’t require a trip to the doctor and can be treated at home with minimal care.


aloe vera, aloe vera plant, picture of aloe bush

The cause of a first-degree burn is usually mild sunburn or a flash burn that is a sudden brief burst of heat, for example: when accidentally touching a hot pot. To protect yourself from the sun, you need to use a SPF that is high enough to protect your specific skin type


The most common symptoms of 1st degree burns are redness, dry skin, swelling of the affected area and pain. The skin is tender to touch and turns white when pressure is applied.

Treating first degree burn

1. Cool the burn - Place the area under running cool water for 10-15 minutes. And if running water is not available, dip the affected area in cool water. Cooling the affected area results in less swelling since the heat is taken away. Don’t use cold water or ice.

2. Soothe the skin – Alove vera with its natural soothing quality is the best remedy. Cut a small piece of Aloe Vera leaf and squeeze its juice over the affected area and if the area is large, cut a leaf and scoop out the gel of the Aloe Vera and apply.

3. Black Cumin Seed oil has an anti-inflammatory agent and is a great moisturizer which is very good for skin repair.

If Aloe Vera Is not available, you can apply colloidal silver which is a natural antibiotic and disinfectant.

3. Leave it open for the skin to breathe. Don’t cover it with a bandage since that will cut off air and it will take time to heal

4. To relieve first degree burn pain, you can take a common pain reliever like aspirin.

5. Emu oil is made up of a similar composition to our skin, which actually helps promote skin cell growth…this causes the skin to heal quicker.

Emu oil has been found to be very effective on burns of all types including sunburn, 1st and 2nd degree burns, and radiation burns. It alleviates pain and dramatically reduces scarring and blistering.

If the burn area is large and you can’t avoid going out of the house, cover it with sterile gauze, so that the skin can breathe, and this will also avoid any brushing up against things and keeps the burn away from dirt.

A healed first degree burn won’t leave a scar. In some cases a slight pigmentation or change in color of the surrounding skin is there but, this is usually gone within a few days time.

Minor first degree burns will usually heal without further treatment if there are no further cuts and blisters.

Watch out for any increase in redness, swelling, pain or fever, it could be a sign of infection.

Sometimes treatment for first degree burns might require a specialist, especially in the case of infants and elderly. If you have a first degree burn on sensitive areas like the face, near the eyes or mouth, or groin area, you need to consult your physician after initial first-aid. Also consult a doctor if you are not sure about the depth and extent of the burn.

By Anuradha Gakhar

Top of First Degree Burn page

Other pages on remedies for skin in connection with this page

* Second degree burns

* Third degree burns

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