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How To Look After Wounds

wound care

While it may be true that prevention is the best medicine, occasionally wounds happen.

A wound, most simply, may defined as an unnatural opening in your skin.

With regards to your feet, a wound may be a result of a direct blunt trauma such as kicking your toe, scratching, or dropping something on your foot, or may be acquired over time such as a shoe rubbing which creates a blister, and/or  breaks the protective barrier that is your skin. A wound may also be a result of our general state of health such as an ulcer associated with varicose veins, diminished circulation, poor distribution of weight in your feet, or other biomechancial anomalies. Ultimately there are many types of wounds, indeed too many to mention in this short article.  However, one element remains the same. That is, the sooner we treat the wound, the better chance we have of preventing the wound from becoming larger, not healing and/or becoming infected.

No matter how small a wound is, the key to quick resolution is treating the area as soon as it is detected. This is particularly important in  individuals with poor immunity, Diabetes, decreased sensation, diminished circultion, and the Elderly.

Any opening in the skin should ideally be treated with an antiseptic (after checking possible allergies) and a non-stick dressing applied. If debris is suspected in the wound, it should also be flushed with a sterile solution before the antiseptic and dressing are applied. The role of the dressing is to protect the wound and promote healing.  It will also prevent further debris from contaminating the wound (such as airborne bacteria, and sock fibres). The dressing may also prevent further irritation from external sources. Generally speaking, the dressing for a non-infected basic wound should be kept dry and changed daily.  The wound should also be checked daily to ensure healing and no further symptoms developing such as an increase in size, discharge or odour. The area surrounding the wound should be monitored for redness and swelling, and possible irritation from the dressing where it is adhered to the skin.

More serious wounds such as ulcers and infected lesions, require more specialty care. Depending on the type of ulcer, specific dressings can be prescibed to heal the area. Some of these dressings may be left on for up to a week, but require the supervision of a doctor, nurse and or podiatrist. Deflection of pressure may also be required, and this may include medical grade footwear and/or and orthotic therapy, when treating wounds of  the feet.

Should you notice any wounds on your feet that are not beginning to heal within a few days, contact your Podiatrist or Doctor.

Thanks for reading, Carissa

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Shop 2/17-19 East Parade
Sutherland, NSW 2232

Tel: 02 9542 3491
Email: info@sutherlandpodiatry.com.au