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Burned yourself?

moira | Posted in Gather For A Chat on

I was looking through some old Threads mags last night and came across a tip that said toothpaste – not gel – is good to put on a burn. Today I caught my hand on the grill element when cooking, and straight away put some toothpaste on a nasty looking burn. Well, it stung for a short time but to my surprise nothing like what I expected. I thought I’d pass it on to others who might get a burn, maybe from an iron.


  1. Gloriasews | | #1

    Thanks for that tip - I'd never heard of that one before, but I'll certainly try it, as I burn myself at least once a week, it seems. 


  2. sewelegant | | #2

    I like your creative thinking!  Here in California everyone has an aloe plant (it's in the cactus family) and it has renown as the burn plant because you can break off a tip and the inside is runny and gelatinous and will stick to your wound.  It also washes off easily.  I like to immediately stick my finger or whatever into ice water.  Or use an ice cube to hold against the burn for a few minutes.  That really works well.  It stops that initial sting.  I have heard recently that was not the recommended treatment though as it may damage the skin (?) I can't remember the exact reason, but for a small burn you're not going to use it that long.  I think what happens with all these remedies is:  air is kept off the burn.  The air really seems to make that burned tissue hurt... does anyone else agree with that conclusion?

    1. Lacey1234 | | #3

      I keep a little bottle of lavender essential oil handy to take away the pain of a burn.  I wouldn't use it on a really serious burn that requires medical attention but, for those you get while cooking or pressing, I'd recommend it over anything else I've tried.  Personally, I can't stand the scent of any lavender product but the essential oil does the trick very nicely, almost instantly, and seems to help the burn heal more quickly, too.

    2. MaryinColorado | | #6

      My daughter was babysitting and a 12 yr old child put her hand on the burner, on purpose!  Quick thinking, she put the child's hand in a bowl of tap water and added a few ice cubes.  She kept adding 2 or 3 cubes as they melted while waiting for the mother who instructed her not to call EMS as the child was calm and not crying.  At the ER, they were told she was probably saved from 3rd degree burns because of this.  Ice cubes alone could cause tissue damage, oil based anything fries the skin (one old wives tale recommended butter, ouch!). 

      After a burn, watch for signs of infection as the risk is high. 

      I always keep Aloe Vera gel or the plant in my house too, it's great for small mild burns and sunburns. 

      I haven't tried the toothpaste idea, but it is an interesting theory.  Will be interested in what others suggest as we sewists probably burn our fingers more than others.  Press press press not iron.................thanks to the person who started this thread.  Mary

      1. User avater
        ThreadKoe | | #7

        Your daughter was really thinking, Bravo. Cathy

      2. damascusannie | | #10

        We were told the same thing when our son burned himself as a little boy. I couldn't believe how quickly the ice melted in the water as the heat from the burn was drawn out. His hand has a small scar from the burn, but it could have been much, much worse as it was caused by melted plastic that adhered to the skin.

        1. MaryinColorado | | #11

          Oh, thank goodness he was spared the pain and repercussions of that melted plastic any more than he was!  His guardian angel was right on task!  Mary

  3. Ralphetta | | #4

    I've read that but never knew if it worked.Here's something else that works if the burn is bad enough to leave a blister. I grabbed a very hot handle with my left hand and after doing everything I could think of, went ahead and went to a party clutching a bag of ice. One of the guests told me to take an antihistamine when I got home. He said it would prevent a blister from forming. It was a large area and would have been a nasty blister. I did as he said and although the burn was still sensitive it did not blister at all, therefore it healed very quickly. Those blisters seem to usually result in raw areas that hurt and create pain. Since then I always keep antihistamines on hand just for that purpose. Recently new shoes left big ugly places on my heels and would have definitely become blisters if I hadn't taken one.

    1. User avater
      ThreadKoe | | #5

      Wish I had known that sooner. DD3 plays rugby and always has nasty blisters from her cleats. Will have to tell her for next season. Thanks. Cathy

      1. marymary | | #8

        Cathy, I learned from my daughter to use the gel packs that are made for burns on foot blisters.  She learned about using them on her foot blisters while walking in the Breast Cancer Three Day.  You cut a little section of the gel and use a band aid to adhere it to the foot.  Works really well. 

        1. User avater
          ThreadKoe | | #9

          Thanks for the tip! I think she is going to try a better pair of cleats this year. Every girl that bought the same kind ended up with nasty blisters. Cathy

  4. moira | | #12

    Here's another idea which I was brought up on, and surprisingly it seems to work too. This again is for a minor burn - the iron or an oven shelf for example. My mum told us to hold the burn near a gentle heat source for a few minutes until the stinging stopped, and after that it wasn't nearly as sore. Who knows what the science is behind some of these things, but my teenage son tried this one recently and was surprised to find it effective.

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