When faced with minor cuts and scrapes, most people tend to ignore the injury until it goes away on its own. Although this may be practical in some cases, it can lead to longer healing times and potential scarring if first aid is not practiced correctly. Fortunately, treating a wound properly at home doesn’t have to be complicated or time-consuming. In this article, we’ll look at how to quickly clean and heal a wound while minimizing damage and ensuring it heals properly.

Before proceeding, learn more about scar formation.

Scar formation is the body’s natural way of healing and repairing tissue damage. This is a complex process that can take weeks or even months to complete. During this process, the body forms a type of fibrous tissue called collagen, which fills and repairs the damaged area. This tissue can be temporary or permanent, depending on the severity of the injury.

1st phase: inflammation.

The initial phase of scar formation begins as soon as the injury appears and is called inflammation. During this phase, white blood cells move to the affected area to clean up debris and bacteria. While platelets and other specialized cells form a protective plug that shields the wound from further contamination. As part of this process, histamine is released, which causes swelling, redness, and pain at the site of injury.

2ᵉ phase: proliferation.

Next comes proliferation, during which new skin cells are generated to fill in the gaps left by the lesion and close any open wounds. Cells from the surrounding tissues migrate to the damaged areas to form granulation tissue about 4-7 days after injury. This granulation tissue eventually develops into scar tissue with unique characteristics, such as thicker layers composed primarily of collagen fibers arranged in bundles called fascicles and crossed by regularly spaced blood vessels to supply them. During this phase, certain growth factors also play an important role in stimulating cell differentiation and regulating collagen deposition, while promoting angiogenesis to restore adequate circulation to the affected site.

3ᵉ phase: remodeling.

The final stage of scar formation is remodeling or maturation. It involves a gradual restructuring or reorganization of newly formed tissue over time, through a continuous process called resorption-synthesis equilibrium, until all signs of disfigurement have disappeared completely or have been sufficiently reduced to no longer be visible without careful inspection. This period can last between 6 and 12 months, depending on size and location, but the scars eventually become semi-transparent, with barely noticeable differences in texture from the surface of the surrounding skin, indicating that complete healing was achieved through the amazing self-healing powers of our body!

To prevent permanent scarring, each stage of healing requires special care.

The inflammation phase:

The best home care for the inflammatory phase is to keep the wound clean, protect it from irritants and other environmental hazards, and apply cold compresses to reduce swelling. Also, medications such as ibuprofen or topical corticosteroids can be used to reduce pain and inflammation. In case of infection, antibiotics may be prescribed.

The proliferation phase:

The priority is to keep the wounds clean and to protect them from further damage. Humidity should also be maintained at this stage to facilitate healing. Applying dressings with petroleum jelly or other moisturizing agents can help keep the wound moist and promote rapid healing. In addition, maintaining a healthy diet rich in vitamins, minerals, proteins, and antioxidants can also help accelerate wound healing during this phase.

The remodeling phase:

It is important to keep the wound covered while it is still fragile and vulnerable to further damage. Additionally, light compression bandages can be applied to minimize movement of the area above the wound, which helps maintain anatomical integrity by minimizing tissue retraction that can occur due to muscle spasms or movement during activities of daily living. The diet should continue to be monitored and rich in essential nutrients to promote proper healing and tissue repair. To soothe any itching or discomfort caused by the scar at this stage, lightly massaging the area can help loosen tight muscles while promoting blood circulation in order to heal properly without a permanent scar.

* criptom strives to transmit health knowledge in a language accessible to all. In NO CASE, the information given can not replace the opinion of a health professional.