How to Treat a Minor Cut

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Cuts and kids seem to go together, especially in the summer.

Not every cut requires stitches, but they do need more than a kiss to make them better.

If it is more than three-quarters of an inch long or a quarter-inch deep, get immediate medical attention, says the American Academy of Dermatology.

For minor cuts, here's what they say to do:

1. Wash your hands with soap and water

2. Then wash the cut

Use cool or lukewarm water and mild soap to remove dirt.

3. Stop the bleeding

Apply pressure using a clean washcloth or gauze for a couple minutes or until the bleeding stops

4. Use petroleum jelly

This promotes healing. Apply it continuously until it heals. Use a tube instead of a jar to keep dirt and bacteria spreading. The AAD suggests not using topical antibiotics.

5. Cover it with a bandage

Change it daily and keep it covered until it heals.

6. Make sure your tetanus shot is up to date

Most minor cuts heal in a week, the AAD says, but if you see any signs of infection, such as pus or increased redness, swelling or pain, call your doctor.
 

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