Wound cleaning must be done to free the wound from loose dermis, dirt, contaminants, foreign bodies, puss, and excess exudate. The peri-wound or skin surrounding the wound must be cleaned with a gauze. Whenever possible, exposing the wound to warm (body temperature) tap water or a shower are good options. Depending on wound size and severity, sterile water or sterile saline water is recommended at first. Direct irrigation of the wound is viable as well.
Things to consider:
- Maintain asepsis at all times.
- Do not remove all exudate as it is part of the healing process.
- Do not disturb the wound. Be gentle and stay on the surface.
- Do not use alkaline cleaners or alcohol as it affects the skin pH.
- Do not use antiseptics or antimicrobial products unless directed by your health professional.
- Do not use gauze in the wound as threads will likely come loose contaminating the wound.