How to Heal Cuts Quickly (Using Easy, Natural Items)

Four Parts:Cleaning the CutDressing the CutHelping Yourself Heal FasterHandling a Severe Case

Our skin is our body's largest organ, and when it is cut, complex biochemical reactions go to work to heal it. Treating a cut using natural items like herbal antiseptics and salves can support the body's healing process, helping the skin heal quickly with minimal scarring. Learn how to clean, dress and heal a cut the natural way.

Part 1
Cleaning the Cut

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    Wash your hands. You should always wash your hands with soap and water before treating a cut. This will help reduce your chances of infection.[1]
    • Wash your hands in warm water and air dry or dry with a clean towel, preferably paper.
    • If the cut is on your hand, try to avoid getting soap in the cut, as this can irritate the wound.[2]
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    Wash the cut with mild soap and water. Hold the cut skin under warm running tap water and then apply a bit of mild soap to the cut to clean it. Gently rub the soap around the cut and then rinse the cut with warm water.[3].
    • Check for gravel or other debris that might be embedded in the area as you rinse the wound and make sure that you remove any foreign bodies that you find. You can use tweezers that have been disinfected with rubbing alcohol to remove any debris.[4]
    • Natural cleansing should be sufficient for most of the shallow cuts that only require home treatment.
    • For deep cuts or cuts with embedded objects, seek medical attention.
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    Stop the bleeding. If the cut is still bleeding after you finish washing it, then apply a piece of sterile gauze and apply pressure to the cut. You can remove the gauze after the cut stops bleeding or cover the cut with a piece of gauze or other low-lint, sterile material. Do not use a “wiping” motion on the cut, as this could pull the cut open further.
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    Rinse again with a saline solution (if available). Use a gentle normal saline solution to help clean the area and prevent infection. Normal saline is the safest solution to use.[5] It has about the same saltiness as blood, tears, and sweat, which is about 0.9%.[6]
    • To make your own normal saline solution, dissolve ½ teaspoon of salt in 8 ounces of boiling water.[7] Allow it to cool, then pour it over the cut and gently wipe away the moisture with a piece of sterile gauze.
    • Use fresh saline solution each time you rinse. Throw away any solution that you don’t use.[8] Bacteria can grow in saline solution in as little as 24 hours.[9]
    • Be sure to keep your cut(s) clean and disinfect them at least once each day until the skin closes completely. If your cut appears red or inflamed, see a doctor.
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    Avoid hydrogen peroxide and iodine. Although hydrogen peroxide is commonly recommended as a treatment for wounds, it actually does not appear to kill bacteria effectively. Hydrogen peroxide may slow the natural healing process and irritate the wound.[10] Iodine may also irritate the cut.[11]
    • Stick with pure, running water or a normal saline solution to rinse the wound.

Part 2
Dressing the Cut

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    Apply a colloidal silver ointment. Silver is a natural antimicrobial agent that has been in use for a long time. A 0.5% to 1% colloidal silver ointment may help to reduce your risk of infection.[12] You can find colloidal silver antibacterial ointments at most drug stores and pharmacies.
    • Apply a thin layer of antibacterial silver ointment to the cut, then cover it with an adhesive bandage.
    • Keep in mind that antibacterial ointments do not heal cuts faster. However, they can help you avoid an infection and encourage your body to heal itself.[13]
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    Use a natural antiseptic. Several herbs have natural antimicrobial effects that can help reduce infection. Some herbal remedies may interact with other medical conditions or prescription medications, so consult with your doctor or pharmacist before using them.
    • Calendula. Calendula has antimicrobial properties and has been shown to accelerate healing.[14] Apply an ointment containing up to 5% calendula to your cut. This concentration has been shown to promote wound healing in animal studies.[15]
    • Tea tree oil. Tea tree oil is a natural antibacterial and antifungal agent. Try dabbing a few drops of 100% tea tree oil on the cut using sterile gauze.[16]
    • Echinacea. Echinacea can help to improve wound healing during periods of high stress, but it has no effect on wound healing during times of low or moderate stress.[17] Try applying a cream or ointment that contains echinacea to help with healing.[18]
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    Use aloe for minor wounds. Apply pure aloe vera gel a few times a day if the wound is shallow. Don't treat deep wounds with aloe vera, including surgical wounds, since it can actually slow healing when it's applied deeper in the body.[19]
    • Aloe can reduce inflammation and moisturize the affected area.
    • In rare cases, individuals may have an allergic reaction to aloe vera. If your skin becomes red or irritated, stop applying aloe and see a doctor.
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    Try honey. Most honeys have natural antibacterial properties, and they also help keep minor cuts moist and protected from bacterial agents.[20] Look for manuka honey, which has been shown to be one of the most effective types of honey for wound treatment.[21]
    • Apply a thin layer of honey to your cut after cleaning it. Cover with an adhesive bandage. Change the dressing frequently.
    • You could also try coconut oil, which also has natural antibacterial and antimicrobial properties.[22][23]
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    Protect the cut. Cover the cut with sterile gauze and secure it with medical tape after applying your dressing of choice. Make sure that the dressing is sterile, such as a sterile gauze pad or an adhesive bandage.[24] Keep the cut protected until it has mostly healed and fresh new skin has grown.
    • When you need to change the dressing, remove the old bandage, cleanse the cut with a saline solution, and apply a clean bandage.[25]
    • Clean and replace the bandage daily or whenever blood soaks through the pad.
    • Always wash your hands before changing your bandage or touching your cut.

Part 3
Helping Yourself Heal Faster

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    Eat more protein and vitamins. Help a cut heal faster by eating more protein and increasing your intake of vitamins that promote healthy skin, especially vitamins A and C.[26] Zinc may also help with wound healing.[27] If you're nutrient deficient, your skin will take much longer to heal. Eat plenty of the following foods to get adequate nutrition, vitamins, and minerals: [28]
    • Lean Protein: lean meats such as chicken and turkey; fish; eggs; Greek yogurt; beans
    • Vitamin C: citrus fruits, cantaloupe, kiwi, mango, pineapple, berries, broccoli, peppers, brussels sprouts, cauliflower[29]
    • Vitamin A: eggs, fortified breakfast cereals, orange colored fruits and vegetables, broccoli, spinach, and dark leafy green vegetables, cod liver oil[30]
    • Vitamin D: fortified milk or juice, fatty fish, eggs, cheese, beef liver [31]
    • Vitamin E: Nuts, seeds, peanut butter, spinach, broccoli, kiwi[32][33]
    • Zinc: Beef, pork, lamb, dark chicken, nuts, whole grains, beans[34][35]
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    Apply green tea extract. Studies have shown that green tea extract may help wounds heal faster.[36][37]Look for a 0.6% concentration of green tea in an ointment.
    • You can also make your own by mixing green tea extract with petroleum jelly.[38]
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    Apply witch hazel to soothe inflammation. Try using witch hazel to help the inflammation go down and reduce redness.[39] Apply a small amount to your cut with a clean cotton ball.
    • Witch hazel is widely available in drug stores
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    Drink plenty of water. Drink at least eight ounces of non-caffeinated, non-alcoholic beverages every two hours. This will replace fluids lost through sweating due to a fever or bleeding at the time of injury. Dehydration may cause the following complications:[40]
    • Dry Skin
    • Headaches
    • Muscle Cramps
    • Low Blood Pressure
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    Do low intensity exercises. Engaging in moderate exercise may strengthen the body’s ability to fight infections, reduce inflammation and speed up the rate of healing.[41] Do not exert the part of the body with the wound. Exercise at least three days a week for 30 to 45 minutes. Ask your doctor what exercise will work best for you. Some easy, low-intensity exercises are:
    • Brisk walking
    • Yoga and stretching
    • Light weight training
    • Bicycling at 5 to 9 miles per hour
    • Swimming
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    Use an ice pack. Apply an ice pack if swelling or inflammation persists or becomes uncomfortable. Cold temperatures can help numb the area and reduce pain as well as prevent any further bleeding.[42]
    • You can make your own ice pack by moistening a towel and placing it in a zip-top freezer bag. Freeze the pack for 15 minutes.
    • Wrap a damp towel around the bag and apply to the affected area.
    • Do not apply an ice pack to an open or infected wound.
    • Do not apply ice directly to the skin as this can be harmful.
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    Use a humidifier. A moist environment can help improve the wound healing process.[43] Use a humidifier to help add moisture to the atmosphere and keep the skin from drying or cracking. Make sure that the humidifier is kept clean to avoid the spreading of bacteria that could cause infection.[44]
    • If the humidity is too high, mold and dust mites may thrive .
    • If the humidity falls too low, the people in your home may suffer from dry skin and develop throat and sinus irritations.
    • Measure humidity with a gauge called a humidistat, which can be purchased from most hardware stores.

Part 4
Handling a Severe Case

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    Determine how deep the cut is. Examine the cut to gauge whether you need medical attention or can treat it at home. If the cut is very deep or severe, go to the hospital and have it treated by a medical professional. Serious flesh wounds may need stitches in order to heal properly.[45] Visit the emergency room if the following is true of your cut:
    • Red muscle or yellow fat tissue is exposed deep in the cut.
    • The cut stays open when you stop holding the edges closed.
    • The cut is located on your face, near a joint, or another high-activity area where it won't stay closed without stitches.
    • The cut is dirty and you can’t get the dirt out.
    • The cut feels tender and/or drains a creamy, thick, grayish fluid.
    • Bleeding won’t stop after 20 minutes of firm pressure.
    • You develop a fever of 100 degrees Fahrenheit or higher.
    • There are red streaks near the wound.
    • You have not had a tetanus shot in 5 or more years and the wound is deep.[46]
    • The cut sliced open an artery – a thick, high-traffic blood vessel. Arterial blood is usually bright red in color. It comes out in spurts, profusely, and there is a high pressure behind it.[47]
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    Stop the bleeding. Regardless of the severity of your cut, it is important to keep yourself from losing any more blood than you must. Place a clean strip of sterile gauze over the cut and apply firm, steady pressure until the bleeding stops.[48] Once the bleeding has stopped, the wound can begin to heal.
    • Don't press too hard. If you apply too much pressure, you could cut off the circulation. This will impede the clotting of your blood, thus keeping your cut bleeding longer.
    • If blood seeps through the gauze, apply another piece on top to soak up the spillage. Don't remove the first piece. Keep constant pressure on the wound.
    • Visit the emergency room or get to a doctor if the blood quickly soaks through the gauze, and pressure doesn't seem to be stopping the bleeding.
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    Use a tourniquet only in very serious cases. The only time that you should apply a homemade tourniquet to a cut is when you are losing an alarming amount of blood. Improper tourniquet use could cause serious damage to your limbs and blood flow, and it might even result in a need to amputate.


  • Do not pick scabs off. Let them fall off naturally.
  • Try to keep the skin around the area as well as the cut(s) moisturized. Drying out the skin results in scabs flaking off and does not assist your skin in healing efficiently- ultimately resulting in scarring.


  • For any burns or cuts that are quite severe or infected, do not use this guide in healing them. Instead, seek qualified medical attention.

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Categories: Injury and Accidents