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Degrees of Burn Injuries: Alabama Fire Injury Attorneys can Help


The four types of burns, according to Advanced and Healthline, are first-degree, second-degree, third-degree and fourth-degree burns. For a burn larger than 3 inches in diameter and second-degree or higher in severity, it is advised to let medical professionals handle all care.

For first degree burns and some second-degree burns that are less than three inches in diameter, these can be treated as follows:

  • Soak in cool water.
  • Do not use ice, as this can hinder healing and cause frostbite.
  • Use mild soap to clean the area.
  • Wrap clean area loosely.

The levels of burns and their symptoms are:

  • First-degree burns impact the outermost portion of the skin and will display redness with minor irritation, swelling, peeling skin and usually heal within seven to 10 days. Sun burns are a common form of a first-degree burn.
  • Second-degree burns include damage that extends beyond the top layer of skin, causing skin to blister and become red and sore. Blisters on second-degree burns may pop open and appear weepy. For this reason, it is important to keep the area clean. Second-degree burns are incredibly painful but typically heal within two to three weeks.
  • Third-degree burns have a waxy, leathery appearance and extend through every layer of skin. There is no set timeline for healing for third-degree burns. These types of burns require a skin grafting procedure and will always result in scarring and disfigurement to some extent. While not as painful as second-degree burns due to destruction of nerves, these are still very painful burns.
  • Fourth-degree burns extend through the entire skin and into underlying fat, muscle and bone. The appearance is black and charred. These burns are the most extensive, can be fatal and will result in significant disfigurement. A fourth-degree burn will require extensive surgery.

Should you or a family member suffer from a burn and believe you are entitled to compensation due to the negligence or carelessness of another party, please be sure you seek medical attention first. Once you have done so, contact Hollis, Wright, Clay and Vail, P.C. at 205.324.3600 or 844.LAW.TALK for a free consultation. Our caring, thorough and experienced attorneys are ready to help.

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