How do I treat minor cuts and scratches on my skin?

Dr. Mehmet Oz, MD
Cardiology (Cardiovascular Disease)
You can treat minor cuts and scrapes yourself by following a few simple steps:
  • Wash your hands and the cut with mild soap and rinse well.
  • Apply pressure to the cut with a clean cloth to stop the bleeding.
  • Apply antibacterial ointment and a bandage.
If a cut is large, appears to be deep, or won't stop bleeding, seek medical attention right away.
Stuart A. Linder, MD
Plastic Surgery
Minor cuts and scratches may be treated with cleansing with hydrogen peroxide followed by antibiotic ointment placement twice a day. Bandaids or occlusive dressings may be used in non-infected wounds.
Ben Kaminsky

The problem is that once the skin is broken, bacteria can enter the wound, causing infection. Apply first aid immediately upon injuring the skin. If the wound or scratch is bleeding, cover it with a clean cloth and apply pressure for 2 or 3 minutes until the bleeding stops.

If the wound is not gaping or bleeding much, apply an antiseptic such as Betadine spray, and cover the sound with a gauze bandage. Try to avoid letting the gauze stick to the wound or it can irritate it.

After 3 to 4 days of healing, apply an antibiotic ointment to the wound and rub gently over the scab. Look for ointments containing antibiotics such as Polymixin B and bacitracin.

Most cuts and scrapes heal quickly with regular cleaning and covering. For a deep wound, seek medical help.

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Beyond Botox: 7 Strategies for Sexy, Ageless Skin Without Needles or Surgery

Sexy and ageless skin is possible for a woman at any age--and she doesn't have to resort to invasive treatments like Botox to get it-as long as she cares for her skin properly, says Ben Kaminsky,...

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.