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Treating small cuts and scrapes:
Many people used to say to open a would to the air as soon as possible.

It is better to keep the wound moist and covered so that blood vessels regenerate faster and inflammation is minimal.

  • Some people are very sensitive to Neomycin which is contained in Neosporin®, and many generic triple antibiotic ointments.
    Polysporin® does not contain Neomycin.
  • Vaseline or Aquaphor will do just fine as a moistening agent.
  • Don't use Providone iodine solution (betadine®), alcohol or hydrogen peroxide because they are too strong and can damage cells, interfering with healing; Plain vaseline is enough.
  • Seek medical help if an infection seems to be getting worse.
    A friend ignored an infection which went down to the bone and he had to have it scraped.
  • Don't leave the scab on too long, lest it leave a larger scar than you would want.
  • Seek medical help if you think you need stitches, you can't clean the wound, or if the injury was caused by an animal or human bite. You should also seek medical attention if it has been 10 years or longer since your last tetanus shot.

NYT Aug., 7, 2006 and Helping Wounds Heal, Some Tips From Mayo Clinic Women's HealthSource
Disinfecting (Hydrogen Peroxide)
Athletic Skin Injuries in Sports Medicine at Ithica.edu

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last updated 5 Mar 20130