Successfully removing dressings can be beneficial for wound care.

It is one thing to apply wound care products that are necessary to heal an injury, but it’s equally important to properly remove applied products when changing the dressing. Part of this process may include efficiently cleaning the damaged tissue to avoid a wound infection and appropriately unraveling a covering or layer of gauze, all of which are crucial in treatment. Here are a few guidelines to consider when removing your wound care products.

Removing gauze

Gauze is a common product for wound dressings because of its ability to keep cuts or gashes free of infection. It can be common to encounter a gauze bandage that sticks to an injury, not only complicating the process of switching dressings, but potentially leading to reopening the wound. The first step to take when it comes to successfully replacing a gauze bandage is remembering to wash your hands before attending to the injured area. Next, begin removing the dressing in the direction of hair growth if applicable. Stop immediately if you feel any resistance while taking off the gauze. During this step, have a bowl or glass of saline or salt water solution handy to soak the bandage, this can ease removal. The solution can be made with using 1 teaspoon of salt per gallon of water, and will allow for a smoother stripping of the gauze dressing.

Minimization

When changing your wound care dressings, it is best to keep dressing changes at a minimum and of course follow your clinicians change instructions. Many advanced wound care dressings are typically slated to last multiply days, and there is no need to over pack your wound with dressing, which will only further complicate the removal process. Your dressing may become dried up, so if this is the case remembering to soak the bandage in saline or a salt water solution will loosen the covering.

Reducing pain through self-guided therapy

For more severe wounds, such as diabetic pressure ulcers or lesions in a chronic stage, dressing removal can be a fairly painful experience. This is where different forms of at-home therapeutic treatment can be useful. Relaxation techniques are recommended by the National Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine as an effective way to minimize the amount of pain experienced during bandage removal. Taking deep slow breaths, focusing on your heartbeat or visualizing guided imagery that evokes pleasant thoughts are encouraged forms of therapy to administer while changing a dressing due to the calming effect they can offer your body during pain sensations.

Advanced Tissue is the nation’s leader in delivering specialized wound care supplies to patients, delivering to both homes and long-term care facilities.