Wound Treatment

Taking the first steps toward wound treatment.

Joy Pape By Joy Pape, RN, BSN, CDE, WOCN, CFCN

So far in dLife's Wound Care Resource, I noted the most common type of wound comes from pressure. There are other types of wounds also. Learn about these in part 3 and part 4 of the 4 part series Your Skin and Beyond. Now it's time to discuss what I have been building to: wound treatment. There is no "one treatment fits all" when it comes to wound care.

Remember from part 1 of this series, there is a lot your health care provider (HCP) takes into account before deciding what wound treatment is best for you. And during the time your wound is healing, your treatment will change depending on how your wound is healing.

Although there is not one treatment for all, there are steps that must be followed in treating all wounds. These steps are all part of your treatment. These steps are:

  1. Prevention
  2. Inspection
  3. Cleansing
  4. Treatment
  5. Protection
  6. Prevention

Prevention
Prevention includes all that I've been talking about since the beginning of this column, including the Do's and Don'ts of Foot Care such as:

  • Manage your blood sugar and blood pressure.
  • Keep your skin clean and dry.
  • Use moisturizers so your skin does not get too dry and crack open.
  • Keep the pressure off of your feet by wearing shoes that fit correctly. Keep moving so as not to develop a pressure ulcer. If you are unable to move, I recommend meeting with a wound care specialist who can teach you preventative measures such as how to choose a pressure relief device and how to turn at least every two hours to prevent a pressure sore. Check with your local health department to see if such services are available to you.

Inspection
Look at your feet daily. This includes looking at the soles (bottoms) of your feet, the tips of your toes, and in between your toes. If you notice a red or open area, contact your HCP right away to get the care you need for your particular wound. If you cannot see your feet, ask a loved one, a friend, neighbor, or a home health aide to look for you. There are special mirrors for people who can see, but can't bend over.

Cleansing
If you do not have an open wound, wash your feet daily with warm (not hot) water and soap. Rinse well with water, and dry. Make sure you also clean and dry in between your toes. It is not usually recommended that people with diabetes soak their feet.

If you do have a wound, there are many wound cleansing products from plain old soap and water to highly specialized products. Ask your HCP which is best for you and your wound.

Dakin's solution (also known as sodium hypochlorite solution) is considered to be either a cleansing solution and/or a wound treatment. Dakin's solution is sometimes recommended for open sores and wounds that are infected. Dakin's solution is made by diluting good old-fashioned bleach, baking soda, and water. All things you have at home. This can be made and recommended in different strengths, so do not try to mix this up on your own without asking your HCP what your recipe should be, how to use it, store it, and how often to replace it with new Dakin's solution.

When cleansing, remember to be gentle with your skin and with your sore or wound.

There is a lot more on the topic of wound treatment I'd like to share with you, but that will be in the next article. For now, stay tuned for the next Inside the Box.

EnJOY!

Read Joy's bio here.

Read more of Joy Pape's columns.

NOTE: The information is not intended to be a replacement or substitute for consultation with a qualified medical professional or for professional medical advice related to diabetes or another medical condition. Please contact your physician or medical professional with any questions and concerns about your medical condition.

PREVIOUS: Your Wound Care Resource, Part 2 NEXT: Your Wound Care Resource, Part 4

 

Last Modified Date: July 10, 2013

All content on dLife.com is created and reviewed in compliance with our editorial policy.

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