Wound care at home is an important factor in the continuation of wound healing. A patient may come home with unhealed areas that still require wound care.
Dressing change and bathing:
- It is important to wash the hands with soap and water before and after dressing changes.
- Put surgical gloves on both hands.
- If dressing change is painful, pain medications might be needed (consult with your doctor), pain medications if needed have to be taken 30 minutes before changing the dressings to give them time to work.
- Dressing change may be done during bathing (ask your doctor if you can shower or bathe).
- Remove the old dressings carefully. Taking care not to disturb scabs on healing process.
- Look for any signs and symptoms of infection.
- Use lukewarm water, wash the wound gently with soap and water, use mild non deodorant soap (such as Dove), if you have used creams or ointments, make sure that you have removed all of it by using a clean white wash cloth (avoid using any cloth that contain dyes as it may be irritating to the skin).
- Dry the skin, apply creams, ointments, if they were given to you (consult your doctor for the type of creams and ointments).
- Cover the wound with a clean, dry dressing (consult your doctor for the type of dressing)
When Bathing a Child:
- Make sure that the hot water tank temperature is set below 120 degree F so that very hot water cannot be turned on accidentally.
- Make sure that the area where bathing is taking place (shower or tub) is clean.
- Fill the tub BEFORE placing child in the water, make sure the water is not too hot.
- Have a specific clean area where you will always perform the dressing change, make sure you have all the supplies needed for dressing change and have a place where you store them.
- Always look for signs and symptoms of infection especially in children as they may not be able to express what they feel.
- Contact your doctor immediately if there are any signs and symptoms of infection.
This information is not intended nor implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice; it should not be used during any medical emergency or for the diagnosis or treatment of any medical condition. Call 911 for all medical emergencies.