People sometimes think of road rash as a "minor" injury in a bicycling accident. Compared to a head or brain injury, it is relatively minor, but this doesn't mean you should underestimate the impact. It can be incredibly painful and keep you out of work. It can get infected and lead to serious complications. It can lead to scarring that forever changes your appearance. You have to take road rash seriously.
To that end, here are a few tips for treating road rash after an accident:
- Use water to clean the injury site as soon as you can.
- While cleaning the wound, try to dab at the area, rather than scrubbing.
- Add Neosporin or a similar ointment to help the wound heal and to prevent infection.
- Wrap the area with bandages.
- Change those bandages on a daily basis, adding more ointment or cleaning the site as needed.
- Add a moisturizer and massage the area. This can reduce the chances that you'll be left with a serious scar.
Above all else, watch for any negative changes that may mean the injury has gotten infected. Signs include redness, swelling, pus, discharges, an unpleasant odor or increased pain. If you notice any of these signs and you think it is infected, you need to seek medical assistance as soon as possible.
Road rash can have a drastic impact on your life. Along with pain and suffering, you have the cost of treatment and the lost wages if you missed time at work. Scarring, especially in visible areas like the face or neck, can change your life forever. Make sure you know if you have a right to compensation after a bike accident.