All cooks usually have their share of kitchen injuries at some point in their lives. Regardless if you are just learning to cook or consider yourself an accomplished chef, kitchen accidents happen to the best of us when we least expect it. Being the case, it always pays to be prepared with kitchen first aid to know how to handle those mishaps when baking, grating, dicing, and broiling to end suffering as quickly as possible.
A common kitchen injury is grabbing something hot such as when a pot holder slips to a splash from whatever you are cooking. If this occurs, the first thing that you want to do is run some cold water over the area. This will help douse some of the initial pain.Whatever you do, never rush to put butter on your burn. Butter can only make the suffering worse by locking in the heat and step up the degree of the burn. Before that red skin has the opportunity to blister, gently wash and dry the burn. Follow up skin healing ingredients such as aloe, lavender essential oil, calendula, green or black tea and gauze for kitchen first aid.
I highly recommend aloe or lavender essential oil as two of my favorites when I had a bad burn from hot chocolate dropping into my lap that also helped with pain. I also went a step further to disinfect using antibiotic cream before covering the wound with gauze.
On the other hand, any blackened skin or loss of feeling may signal a third degree burn that is more serious. You may want to visit the emergency room for prompt medical attention to check for any nerve damage.
Cuts occur frequently from a slip of the hand using a knife, opening hard to pull tabs that you rip off a can to dropping a glass are just possible scenarios where kitchen first aid would come in handy. One of the worst things is that the cut can be so deep that you don’t initially feel it until all the blood gushes out. When this happens, grab a clean towel and hold steady pressure on the cut for at least five minutes without taking the towel off.
After you finally inspect the wound, the speed of blood flow is a clue to keep in mind. To treat your cut at home, the blood should just be oozing and not squirting out, which means that you might have cut an artery. If by chance you are seeing a bright red gusher, press a clean towel over it for at least 15 minutes to give the blood time to congeal before running the cool water again for a good 10 minutes. However, you need to get to the ER if the blood keeps flowing out fast.
The reason to flush any cut is for washing out the bacteria from your hands touching whatever you were cooking. Apply antibiotic cream and cover with a bandage or gauze and medical tape. Always check the expiration date of the antibiotic cream before you go to use it before they could have expired since your last injury.
Though as careful as we all try to be, the reality is that accidents happen. Being prepared with just some basic kitchen first aid like I shared with you today may hopefully shorten your pain just in case the worst happens. Take care and stay safe!