Although they may not bleed as much as a deep wound, the resulting peeling of skin would give rise to an intense pain due to exposed nerve endings.
The human skin consists of several layers and among them the ‘epidermis’ would be the outer layer and the ‘dermis’ would lie below. The nerve endings would be traversing the dermis, but would not traverse the epidermis. An abrasion is most likely to remove parts of the epidermis and in case the abrasion is severe, parts of the dermis can also get scraped. Such deep abrasions may be associated with other types of injuries which may require treatment beyond that is required for a simple abrasion such as stitching.
Let us now discuss some of the first aid measures that can be given to a person who had suffered an abrasion.
-A minor abrasion would not require any significant intervention as it can be washed with soap and water and be dressed in a clean clothing or a piece of gauze for several days. In certain instances, it may heal faster if exposed to the outside air but it might catch infective organisms if the wound becomes contaminated.
A more serious wound would have to follow the same first aid measures but, have to be more careful not to cause further damage to the wounded skin.
-As such, the first thing would be to wash the abrasion with gently flowing water with a mild soap which would not irritate the skin. During this time, the wound surface can be cleaned by scrubbing as it is possible for dirt to be lodged in to the skin and it may not be released to the gently flowing water. Thus, using a clean soft cloth, the area can be swept carefully as to dislodge any residue dirt that may be remaining.
-Inspect carefully for the extent of the wound as there may be other wounds that require further attention as in the case of associated deep cut wounds.
-Following the cleaning up process, an antibacterial ointment can be applied to the wound in case if it might become infected.
-A clean dry dressing, ideally sterile gauze dressing should be applied to the wound to prevent any infection from reaching the wound as well as to protect it from any other insults.
-The dressing should be changed every few days and scrubbing the wound with antiseptic solutions would not be advisable all the time as it may damage the newer cell layers that are gradually forming.
-If the abrasion is large, it should ideally be seen by a doctor and necessary measures to clean and dressing the wound would be undertaken.
-The victim of an abrasion might get relief from taking an over the counter pain killers as well.