When it comes to minor wounds like small cuts and abrasions, the human body is designed to heal itself with amazing efficiency. Of course, if a wound is more than just a minor injury, medical attention in the form of a doctor’s visit or hospitalisation may be required. If you’re unsure about the potential severity of a cut or abrasion to the skin, or if there’s a risk of infection or disease (for example, from an animal bite), then we recommend seeking immediate professional medical attention.
So, what constitutes a ‘minor wound’?
Generally, this would be something like a superficial cut, graze, blister, chafing of the skin, or a minor burn. Other examples could include a mosquito bite or insect bite that you’ve scratched. Sometimes, broken skin can result from acne or repeated scratching of irritated skin due to allergies or skin conditions like eczema.
Assuming you’re in generally good health, your body is well equipped to heal minor wounds – but you can aid the process with a little basic care.
HOW TO HELP A WOUND HEAL OPTIMALLY
In order for your body to heal a minor injury, 3 key elements are necessary:
- An antimicrobial environment around the wound
- Moisturisation of the wound site
- Anti-inflammatory factors
These are important because they help prevent issues like secondary infections, while maintaining relatively normal function of the tissues that are knitting and helping to heal scars faster.
1. ANTIMICROBIAL AGENTS
After incurring a wound, the body will work to keep the site clean and free from infection. Of course, this natural process can be enhanced by applying topical agents that offer antimicrobial protection. By keeping a wound site sterile and free from potential infection, you enable the body to allocate resources to healing rather than having to fight off invasive microbes or deal with environmental pathogens.
Contrary to popular opinion, a minor wound should not be left to dry out. Why? Because moisturisation is necessary to allow for the transport of nutrients, clearing away of dead cells, and regeneration of tissue. The only exception to this is in the case of an already infected wound, which may require exposure to dry air to prevent the spread of infection.
In a hospital environment, more serious wounds are always stitched or bound, and covered – to prevent exposure to infection as well as to maintain a moisturised healing environment. And for minor wounds, there are several well-known natural oils which are renowned for their effectiveness in moisturising the skin while also exerting an antimicrobial effect.
3. ANTI-INFLAMMATORY FACTORS
Inflammation at the site of a wound is the body’s natural reaction to tissue damage. This is caused by the elevated presence of white blood cells, which flood the area to combat what the body’s immune system perceives as an invasive presence. When inflammation is eased, the body is able to heal a wound more easily. This is because the metabolic by-products of excessive inflammation can also overwhelm the body’s own ability to regenerate tissue.
When these 3 elements are present, it’s much easier for your body to facilitate wound closure, effectively form a scab, and initiate new cell production.
MINIMISING SCARS AND RESIDUAL SKIN DAMAGE
To prevent unnecessary scarring, there are a few simple guidelines to consider:
- Keep a minor wound covered and moisturised to prevent pliable new regrowth tissue from stiffening or drying out.
- Avoid direct sun exposure and avoid placing stress on the wound (for example, stretching the skin).
- Don’t pull off a scab or re-expose the wound – this can lead to secondary tissue damage and more scar tissue.
- If you have acne that leads to scarring, you can reduce skin damage by gently exfoliating on a regular basis, as well as using natural oils or ointments to keep your skin soft and pliable. Natural remedies like African Potato, Tea Tree Oil, and Aloe Vera are best for this.
Scarring, even to a very small degree, is unavoidable, but it can be minimised. When tissue regrows, collagen is a key ingredient – so, if possible, ensure you’re taking a collagen supplement or eating collagen-supporting foods.
FORMULATION MAGIC: WHY NATURAL INGREDIENTS MATTER
When considering skincare products that help heal minor wounds or abrasions, natural is best. There are many topical creams and ointments that are essentially pharmaceutical in nature. Although these can be helpful for certain situations, they often contain medications, petroleum-based or synthetic ingredients, and other chemicals which can cause irritation to a minor injury site.
Down to Earth wellness care products are formulated using ingredients that are pure and natural. These include Aloe Vera, Witch Hazel, Calendula, Echinacea, Tea Tree, African Potato extract, Oat Extract, Coconut oil, Evening Primrose oil, and beeswax.
When creating products using ingredients like these, more is not necessarily better. In fact, determining the optimal concentration level is the key to effectiveness. Our formulator and chemist, Dr Elsabe Cloete, ensures that each product contains the correct active ingredients at precisely the right concentrations.
PRODUCTS DESIGNED TO PROTECT AND HEAL
Down to Earth offers you a range of quality natural products designed specifically to strengthen and moisturise your skin. These include:
AFRICAN POTATO CREAM
It’s no coincidence that Down to Earth African Potato Cream is the bestselling product in our range. Used like a balm, it is a rich, deeply moisturising cream which powerfully reduces and relieves dry, inflamed skin. It’s also highly effective as an ointment for minor cuts and scrapes, sunburn, rash, and a host of other applications.
And, because it penetrates the skin so effectively, African Potato Cream also helps relieve the symptoms of muscular pain and inflammation too.
CLEAR SKIN GEL
Down to Earth Clear Skin Gel is a soothing, purifying antimicrobial gel most commonly used to treat skin abrasions, irritation and rash, skin allergies, and damaged or problem skin. It’s also proven highly effective at neutralising bacterial and fungal infections.
Clear Skin Gel is made with 83% organic Aloe Vera, Tea Tree, and other natural ingredients that are renowned for their antibacterial, antifungal, and antiviral properties. In addition, it’s a go-to product and instant confidence booster for the treatment of acne or other skin concerns.
FIRST AID KIT ESSENTIALS BUNDLE
A good first aid kit should contain products that can be used for a variety of functions – and natural antiseptics and wound treatment ointments should be at the top of your list.
The Down to Earth First Aid Kit Essentials Bundle does just that. And because the ingredients are all-natural, you can apply these products topically for any length of time without worrying about side effects or skin irritation. Fuss-free, versatile, and safe: the perfect addition to your first aid item list.
DOWN TO EARTH FACIAL SKIN CARE RANGE
The Down to Earth Facial Skin Care Range includes, among other, the Refresh Skincare Pack and the Recharge Skincare Pack. These products contain active natural ingredients that have antimicrobial and anti-inflammatory properties, as well as soothing and moisturising irritated skin. The Refresh range is specifically formulated to cleanse, combat acne and optimise skin health, while the Recharge range also offers relief from skin irritation, shaving rash or nicks, and more.
Remember: the skin is incredibly complex, the largest organ in the human body, and one that is constantly exposed to the elements. It deserves to be looked after.
To find out more about the healing properties of our all-natural range, simply contact us and we’ll provide advice or recommendations suited to your needs.