From your health and wellness experts at Prisma Health

How to treat a minor burn

Prisma Health Telehealth
We have all done it – remembered to put sunscreen on the kids but not on ourselves. Or thought the cookie sheet pan was cool when it wasn’t. All ending in a burn.
Prisma Health Nurse Practitioner Katie Schill said most burns will resolve in 1–2 weeks with some at-home treatment.
For minor burns, Katie recommends these steps.
  • First thing is to cool the burn. Run the area under cool (but not cold) water for at least 20 minutes.
  • Do not pop any blisters that may form.
  • After the burn is cooled, apply cool (but not overly cold) compresses for 5–10 minutes at a time.
  • Take acetaminophen or ibuprofen as needed for pain.
  • Remain hydrated.
  • You can apply antibiotic ointment or aloe vera after the burn has cooled.
  • If you apply aloe vera, use a product with a high percentage of aloe vera. Try to steer clear of products with dyes and scents added as they can further irritate a burn.
Do NOT do this:
  • Use butter or any kind of oil.
  • Use ice, which can cause further tissue damage.
Katie said it’s time to seek care if you have a widespread burn, a burn that has caused a white, waxy appearance on the skin or a dark brown or black skin appearance. She added, “Seek care for any burn that begins to appear to be infected – becomes warmer to the touch, more painful, and has yellow or green drainage.”

Same-Day Care

Prisma Health offers several same-day care options for minor illnesses such as UTIs. To learn more, visit