Glass is considered as one of the breakable items at home but broken glass can easily cause accidents if you are not careful enough. Fortunately, cuts in the skin from broken glass do not require special attention unlike with other household injuries. Minor wounds can be easily taken care of with appropriate first aid care at home. Just like in any type of injury, it is essential to take into consideration the steps to prevent infection and discomfort as well as ensuring that the wound is not serious to require care from a medical professional.
Assessment of the cut
Initially, assess the cut caused by broken glass to make sure that it is minor enough to be treated at home. It is important to call a doctor if the following are present:
- Wound on the face
- Jagged edges to the wound
- Punctures or deep cuts without a tetanus shot
- Clotting is not present
- Gray-colored discharge
- Discomfort upon movement or numbness
- Dirt or foreign objects that are embedded in the wound that could not be removed
- Edges of wound are gaping and could not be closed if bandaged
You should also determine if there are glass fragments still present within the wound. If there are leftover fragments, you can extract the glass pieces using tweezers. In case this task is difficult, you can take the individual to a doctor or emergency department at the nearest hospital.
Cleaning the wound
The first step is to wash the wound with cool running water by either holding the affected part under a faucet or pour water over it. With soap and a washcloth, wash the skin surrounding the affected area. Make sure that soap will not enter the cut since it can cause irritation. For comfort to the individual, it is best to use liquid soap on a wet washcloth before using it on the skin.
Disinfection of the wound
You should also disinfect the wound caused by broken glass. You can use a cotton ball or swab and soak it in rubbing alcohol or hydrogen peroxide and apply it in a gentle manner on the cut. If alcohol is used, always make sure that the individual is well aware that this process will cause a stinging sensation.
Once the wound caused by a broken glass is thoroughly cleaned and properly disinfected, you have to cover the wound. With an adhesive bandage, apply it if the wound gets in contact with clothing or can become dirty. If not, you can leave the wound without any covering if it is comfortable so that it will stay dry and clean. If bandages are used, make sure that they are changed on a daily basis. Do not forget to apply an antibiotic ointment over the wound every time you will change the dressing. This will promote the faster healing of the wound as well as minimize scarring.