A burn is a type of injury to flesh
caused by heat, electricity, chemicals,
light, radiation or friction. Most burns
only affect the skin (epidermal tissue
and dermis). Rarely, deeper tissues,
such as muscle, bone, and blood vessels
can also be injured. Burns may be
treated with first aid, in an
out-of-hospital setting, or may require
more specialized treatment such as those
available at specialized burn centers.
Managing burns is important because they
are common, painful and can result in
disfiguring and disabling scarring,
amputation of affected parts or death in
severe cases. Complications such as
shock, infection, multiple organ
dysfunction syndrome, electrolyte
imbalance and respiratory distress may
occur. The treatment of burns may
include the removal of dead tissue (debridement),
applying dressings to the wound,
administering large volumes of
intravenous fluids, administering
antibiotics and skin grafting.
Burns are classified as follows,
according to the severity of tissue
• First-degree burns -- affect only the
outer layer of the skin (epidermis),
causing pain and redness
• Second-degree burns -- extend to the
second layer of the skin (the dermis),
causing pain, redness, and blisters that
• Third-degree burns -- involve both
layers of the skin and may also damage
the underlying bones, muscles, and
tendons. The burn site appears pale,
charred, or leathery. There is generally
no pain in the area because the nerve
endings are destroyed.
Following these Dietary tips may improve
your healing and general health.
• Eat antioxidant foods, including fruit
• Avoid refined foods, such as white
breads, pastas, and sugar.
• Eat fewer red meats and more lean
meats, cold-water fish, tofu (soy) or
beans for protein.
• Use healthy cooking oils, such as
olive oil or vegetable oil.
• Reduce or eliminate trans-fatty acids,
found in commercially baked goods such
as cookies, crackers, cakes, French
fries, onion rings, donuts, processed
foods, and margarine.
• Avoid caffeine and other stimulants,
alcohol, and tobacco.
• Drink 6 - 8 glasses of filtered water
• A daily multivitamin, containing the
antioxidant vitamins A, C, E, the
B-complex vitamins and trace minerals
such as magnesium, calcium, zinc, and
• Omega-3 fatty acids, such as fish oil,
1 - 2 capsules or 1 tablespoonful oil,
one to two times daily, to help decrease
inflammation, and for healing and
• Probiotic supplement (containing
Lactobacillus acidophilus), 5 - 10
billion CFUs (colony forming units) a
day. Taking antibiotics can upset the
balance of bacteria in your intestines.
Probiotics or "friendly" bacteria can
help restore the balance, improving
gastrointestinal and immune health.
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