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Cuts and grazes

Cuts and grazes are common injuries that can usually be treated at home. A cut is when the skin is fully broken, and a graze is when only the top layers of skin are scraped off.

Usually, all you need to do is clean the cut or graze to reduce infection and apply pressure and raise the injury to stop the bleeding. The wound should heal by itself in a few days.

Watch our video - Cuts and grazes

What to look for - Cuts and grazes

If the bleeding doesn’t stop, or if there’s a foreign object in the cut, or you think it might be infected, then you should tell them to see a health care professional.

What to do - Cuts and grazes

Clean the wound by rinsing it under running water or using alcohol-free wipes.

Pat it dry using a gauze swab and cover it with sterile gauze. If you don’t have these, then use a clean, non-fluffy cloth.

Raise and support the part of the body that’s injured. If it’s a hand or arm, raise it above the head. If it’s a lower limb, lay them down and raise the cut area above the level of the heart. This will help stop the bleeding.

Remove the gauze covering the wound and apply a sterile dressing.

If you think there’s any risk of infection then suggest they see a health care professional.


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