Kitchen Burns 101

Kitchen Burns 101 – Dos and Donts

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It’s an unfortunate fact that healthcare is littered with hooky home remedies, circulated through years of word of mouth. Burn care especially, is one such sphere full of misinformation and half-truths.  

For example, you’ve probably heard before that toothpaste can be used as a quick remedy for kitchen burns, when in reality this is completely false. These kinds of healthcare myths can be quite harmful if they are taken at face value. It’s up to you to do your research on an individual level and determine fact from fiction. Luckily, health care info is readily available on the internet, for those who choose to look for it.

So here is a list of burn care dos and don’ts for you to keep in mind:

Do: Remove clothing that has been burned or soaked in hot fluid or chemicals, as well as any jewellery in the affected area.

Don't: Remove clothing if it is stuck to the burn area.

Removing all items of clothing or jewellery around the burn is important because if the skin starts to swell, these items can restrict blood flow to the area. Additionally, in the case of scalding, clothing can retain heat and increase the severity of the burn. 

However, in the case of severe burns, do not attempt to remove clothing that is stuck to the skin. Doing so can cause the skin to peel off which will create an open wound, hamper healing time and potentially lead to infection. Medical intervention is necessary to remove clothing in such a case.

Do: Soothe the burn under running water to stop the burning, soothe pain and reduce swelling.

Don't: Use ice-cold water or ice cubes on a burn.


Dunking your burn in ice water or soothing it with an ice pack might be your first instinct when you get a kitchen burn, but this is an absolute no-no. Burns damage the skin tissue and expose underlying layers which are more sensitive, putting ice directly onto this sensitive tissue can cause damage and interfere with the healing process. In order to avoid these issues, make sure you are using cool or room temperature water to soothe burns at home.


Do: Cover the burn with a soothing ointment and a clean bandage.

Don't: Apply sketchy burn remedies such as toothpaste or butter.


It is a widely spread myth that using toothpaste or butter can help heal kitchen burns. While you may have heard this touted as an easy, quick remedy for burns, it can actually do more harm than good. Butter, and other such greasy substances, trap heat on the surface of the skin and worsen the injury, whereas toothpaste may contain ingredients that are harmful for burned skin and can intensify pain and aggravate the injury.


Instead, you can use healing ointments, such as Aloe Vera gel, to soothe the burn. 


Do: See a doctor if blisters are large or cloudy, or if the burn is showing signs of infection.

Don't: Break open small blisters because this could let germs into the wound.


Blisters are a normal part of healing, so do not be alarmed if you see them forming. You can cover blisters with a clean bandage and allow them to clear by themselves. Do not pop blisters as this will create an open wound which might get infected. However, if the blisters are large and painful, or showing signs of infection such as leaking pus, then you should consult a doctor.


Treating kitchen burns at home is as simple as that. Keep these handy points in mind and always turn to medically backed burn remedies over dubious health care tips. If you are still unsure of how to give first aid for minor burns, turn to a medical professional for help.


Disclaimer - Please note that the above recommendations are general care tips. Consult a health care professional in case of any uncertainty around wound treatment and healing.

Always see your doctor if a wound is deep, bleeding profusely or shows signs of infection. For diabetic patients especially, proper wound care holds the utmost importance. Do not hesitate to discuss any concerns you may have with your doctor or your podiatrist, even when it comes to minor wounds and cuts – especially if they’re on your feet.

The information provided through this website should not be used to diagnose or treat a health problem or disease. Although compiled with great care, it is not a substitute for professional advice. If you have or suspect a health problem, consult your doctor immediately. 

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