Summer First Aid: Minor Wounds

Cuts and grazes are common injuries that you might need to deal with over summer.

You can usually treat a cut or graze yourself by stopping any bleeding, carefully cleaning the wound and covering it with a plaster or bandage.

1. Stop the bleeding

  • Check the wound and make sure there’s nothing stuck in it.
  • Put pressure on the area for several minutes using a clean cloth or bandage.
  • Raise the injury above the level of your heart to help reduce the flow of blood.
  • When the bleeding has stopped, firmly wrap a new bandage over the cut. Check it after 10 minutes or so if you need to clean the wound.

2. Clean and dress it

  • Wash your hands well with soap and water.
  • Clean it with tap water or use sterile saline solution if you have some. Try to gently remove dirt or gravel if it’s a graze.
  • Gently pat dry with a clean cloth, towel or gauze swab.
  • If you have some, apply antiseptic cream like Savlon or Betadine if it needs cleaning.
  • Cover with a non-stick dressing and keep dry for at least 24 hours.
  • Replace the dressing if it gets wet or dirty.
  • Check whether you need a tetanus injection if it is more than 10 years since your last one, or 5 years if the wound is dirty and deep.
  • Deeper cuts might need stitches by a nurse or doctor.

Find more information on treating minor wounds on