There are many misconceptions about wound care which still exist today and are not helpful in healing wounds.  One of the most common ones is to let your wound air out. Each week I have a patient ask me the question, “shouldn’t I let this get air to help it heal faster?”.  The answer is no.  Wounds do need oxygen to heal, but this oxygen comes from blood flow, not the outside air. As long as the body has healthy blood blow that is not being comprimised by peripheral vascular disease, the would will be getting sufficient oxygen. The next step is to keep the wound moist to maintain a healthy and homeostatic environment. This is usually accomplished with a variety of wound hydrogels or antibiotic ointments.

Bandaids can sometimes make a wound too moist which is why we usually recommend gauze to keep it covered.  If you’re using a band aid to cover a smaller wound, then it is sometime helpful to let the skin around the wound dry out if it becomes too moist. This is referred to as macerated skin. I usually tell patients to give the wound an hour or so after bathing to let it return to its natural state before applying another band aid. Using gauze can prevent this altogether.

So the next time you consider letting your wound “air out”,  you may want to reconsider.

Leave a Reply

Subscribe to Dr. Nick's Blog

Enter your email address to subscribe to this blog and receive notifications of new posts by email.

Join 5,375 other subscribers

Dr. Nick’s Blog

Topical Nail Solution to soften and clear discolored toenails.
%d bloggers like this: