Does My Wound Need Air to Heal?
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How Wounds Heal
Let us explain the science behind wound healing. When it sustains an injury, the human body has the incredible ability to heal and repair itself with the help of a highly sophisticated process. There are different stages of wound healing that take place, and the body works to close the affected area — but outside factors can either delay or speed up the process. Letting a wound ‘breathe’ is among the factors that may hinder a wound’s ability to heal.
Your body will immediately go into action when you get an injury or a cut, with blood platelets rushing to the affected site to prevent further bleeding. Then, inflammation takes place, and immune cells clean up any debris or bacteria present to keep the wounds from becoming infected. Soon, new tissue grows to cover the wound, with collagen production increasing. And before you know it, the wound’s collagen fibers reorganize, and remodeling takes place — the last stage of wound healing.
Importance of Moist Environment for Proper Wound Healing
Air does not help with wound healing — but a moist environment definitely will. This is because the moist environment will support cell migration. In addition, it helps keep the scabs from forming since it can impede new tissue growth.
Professional wound care uses hydrogels and films, which are specifically designed to upkeep a controlled, moist environment over the wound. This way, the wounds remain hydrated, and the dressing acts as a barrier against harmful bacteria, which reduces the risk of infection.
Do Wounds Heal Faster Covered or Uncovered? Is Air Necessary?
Airing out wounds will only dry out new surface cells, resulting in increased pain and even slowed healing. Therefore, moisture and covering a wound will help it heal faster. Keep in mind, though, that the wound does not need to be overly wet from the surface.
Here are some reasons why covered wounds heal faster:
- If you do not cover a wound, it will dry out and not heal.
- Covering a wound helps maintain natural moisture, which keeps the cells alive.
- When a cut is exposed, it is likely to pick up debris or dirt from the air. This is another reason why ‘letting a wound breathe’ might actually do more harm than good.
- A covered wound heals in a moist environment, which lowers its chances of leaving a scar.
- An uncovered wound will probably hurt more.
- Wounds may have a slow healing process if left uncovered.
Questions About Does My Wound Need Air to Heal? ?
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Dr. Carl Mani
I had severe wounds in both lower legs due to a severe case of cellulitis. I was in acute pain and worried about my prognosis.
Your body works on its own to heal the wound as soon as you sustain an injury; make sure not to believe in myths and hinder the healing. Leaving a wound uncovered to let it breathe might lead to more pain, infections, dried tissues, and more. Talk to an expert to avoid any complications.