Most cases of puncture wounds could not cause severe bleeding and they rapidly close. Apparently, these characteristics make puncture wounds appear less critical than it is. Always remember that puncture wounds has the potential to be serious due to the threat of infection. These wounds can be caused by bites from animals, humans or by stepping on pointed objects such as a nail. It is important to seek first aid care and medical treatment if an individual sustains a puncture wound so that it will be properly evaluated. If the wound is infected, there are steps to take into consideration.
Consult a doctor first
Your doctor should examine the infected puncture wound and can even take a culture of the wound to determine the organism responsible for causing the infection. Make sure that you will inform the doctor how the wound was sustained so that the appropriate treatment is given.
The individual might be prescribed with antibiotics for the infected puncture wound. The doctor must be informed regarding allergies to a particular antibiotic so that an alternative can be prescribed. The antibiotic will also prevent a systemic infection from developing.
Keep the wound clean
You have to keep the puncture wound clean in order to help promote the healing process. Ask your doctor regarding the ideal wound cleaner to use. Over-the-counter cleaners such as hydrogen peroxide can be used.
Apply an antibiotic ointment and cover the wound
With an antibiotic ointment, you have to apply it on the puncture wound that has been properly cleaned. After the wound has been cleaned and applied with an antibiotic ointment, keep it covered. Dressings are used and make sure that you will regularly change it once it is soiled. Do not forget to clean the wound properly before applying new dressings.
If the individual has not received a tetanus shot, it is important to get a shot. In case the wound is deep or inflicted by an animal or human, a tetanus shot is required, especially for those who have not received a shot in the last five years.
What to considering when treating a puncture wound
Always make sure that you will thoroughly wash your hands before treating an infected puncture wound. This will help prevent the introduction of additional bacteria to the already infected wound.
In case the wound of the individual continues to worsen or there are signs of increasing swelling, redness or drainage of pus, you have to call a doctor right away or take the individual directly to the nearest hospital. This indicates that the infection is getting worse and a different mode of treatment must be employed.
Always remember that even though puncture wounds appear harmless, they are at high risk for infection if it is not properly cleaned or medical treatment was not given right away. With the first aid measures stated, you can easily take care of a puncture wound that became infected.