Minor cuts and grazes are some of the most common injuries. It happens when the outer layer of skin gets cut or scraped off.
A cut normally penetrates deeper into the skin than a graze and causes bleeding and pain. It may occur as a result of an accident while handling a sharp object like a knife or broken glass.
Grazes result from friction on the skin against a rough surface, causing the outer surface of the skin to be ripped away. It can be painful and may bleed a little. Usually, a graze will cover a larger area of skin than a cut.
Eventually a scab will form over the affected area and heal quickly. Minor cuts and grazes can be easily treated at home as such injuries are not too deep and do not need stitches.
After getting a cut or graze, first stop the bleeding by applying pressure to the area with a clean cloth, tissue or your fingers. After the bleeding has stopped, clean the area thoroughly with antiseptic soap and water.
Now you can use some simple and easy home remedies to facilitate the healing process and prevent infection.
Here are the top 10 home remedies for cuts and grazes.
Honey is a time-honored remedy for minor cuts due to its several skin-friendly enzymes and natural antibacterial properties. It also keeps the affected area moisturized, clean and free from infection to facilitate healing.
- Slather some pure honey on the affected area.
- Bandage it and leave it on for 1 hour.
- Remove the bandage and rinse the area well with water.
- Follow this remedy several times a day for a few days.
Garlic is an old remedy for healing cuts and grazes due to its antibiotic and anti-inflammatory properties. It will facilitate healing and reduce pain.
Plus, it has an antimicrobial compound called allicin that helps prevent infection.
- Crush a few garlic cloves, mix in a little honey, and put it over the affected area for 5 to 10 minutes. Remove the garlic and clean the area with warm water.
- You can also mix 3 chopped garlic cloves in 1 cup of wine. Let it stand for 2 to 3 hours, then strain. Apply the solution to the well-cleaned cut with a clean cloth.
Repeat either of these remedies 2 times daily until the skin heals completely.
Note: If garlic causes skin irritation, stop using it.
3. White Vinegar
White vinegar has a mild acidity due to acetic acid that can cleanse and disinfect cuts. Plus, its astringent and antiseptic properties are also helpful in preventing infection.
- Mix 1 tablespoon of salt in 2/3 cups of filtered water until the salt is thoroughly dissolved.
- Add 1 teaspoon of vinegar and mix well.
- Soak a cotton ball in this solution and apply it to any fresh cuts.
- Repeat the process every 2 to 3 hours.
- Follow this remedy daily until your skin looks better.
4. Aloe Vera
You can also use aloe vera to speed up the healing time of cuts and grazes. It is soothing, anti-inflammatory and antibacterial, and hence recommended by experts to facilitate healing of minor cuts.
- Break open a small leaf from an aloe vera plant and extract the gel.
- Apply the gel on the affected area and allow it to dry on its own.
- Repeat every few hours.
5. Tea Tree Oil
Tea tree oil has antiseptic, antimicrobial and healing properties that can help treat minor cuts and grazes. It will fight infection, promote healing and help soothe any associated pain.
- Mix about 1/2 tablespoon of tea tree oil in 1 cup of warm water. Use this solution to rinse the cut and the surrounding skin twice a day.
- Alternatively, you can dilute a few drops of tea tree oil with 1 tablespoon of almond oil or olive oil. Apply this diluted solution on the affected area 2 or 3 times a day.
Turmeric is another very useful remedy for minor cuts and grazes due to its antiseptic, anti-inflammatory and antibacterial properties. It can help stop bleeding, reduce pain and prevent infection.
- To stop the flow of blood from a cut, place a little bit of turmeric powder on it and press gently.
- To aid healing, prepare a paste of some turmeric and sufficient water and apply it on the affected area. Leave it on for 20 minutes, then rinse it off with warm water. Repeat twice daily for a few days.
Calendula, also known as marigold, is an antiseptic herb that can reduce inflammation, slow down bleeding, alleviate pain and encourage quick healing of cuts and grazes.
- Add 1 tablespoon of dried calendula flowers to 1 cup of water and boil it for 5 minutes. Strain and allow it to cool. Use the solution to wash the affected area 2 or 3 times a day.
- You can also apply calendula creams and lotions on the affected area several times a day to promote new skin growth and quick healing.
Plantain is another popular remedy for treating minor cuts and grazes. This herb has cleansing, anti-inflammatory and antimicrobial properties that can reduce pain and prevent infection. Plus, it contains allantoin that can heal injured skin and stimulate the growth of new skin cells.
- Crush a few plantain leaves to extract the potent juice. Apply the crushed leaves on the freshly cleaned area and leave it on for a few hours.
- You can also use plantain oil or ointment on cuts and grazes to facilitate the healing process.
Follow either of these remedies 2 or 3 times daily until the skin heals.
Comfrey is great for treating shallow cuts and grazes. This herb has allantoin that helps heal cuts and grazes. Plus, it promotes the growth of healthy new tissue and reduces the risk of scarring.
- Add 1 tablespoon of dried comfrey to more than 1 cup of hot water. Cover and steep for 15 minutes. Strain and allow it to cool. Use this solution to clean the affected area 2 or 3 times a day.
- Fresh comfrey leaves also can be rubbed directly on minor cuts, or you can apply comfrey ointment on the affected area several times a day to promote healing.
Onion has antiseptic and antimicrobial properties and helps treat minor cuts quickly. Plus, it has chemicals like sulfur compounds and quercetin that can reduce pain.
- Cut a fresh onion into thick pieces and rub them on the affected skin.
- Repeat several times a day to reduce swelling and speed healing.
- Cover the affected area with an adhesive bandage or gauze-type bandage to promote healing and reduce the chance of scarring. Don’t cover the cut too tightly, as a bit of air circulation is necessary to facilitate healing. Change the bandage daily to prevent infection.
- Keep the area moisturized to speed healing, prevent cracking and reduce the chance of scarring.
- If a scab forms, don’t pick at it as it may lead to infection and interefere with the healing.
- Protect the area from direct sunlight to avoid skin darkening.
- Eat foods rich in vitamins A, C and E to aid in the healing process.
- Boost your protein intake to speed up recovery time.
- Drink plenty of water to keep the body and skin hydrated.
See a doctor if the cut is too deep, bleeding cannot be stopped or there are signs of infection like redness, swelling, pus, fever and extreme pain.