- First Aid
Preventing Infection After Dog Bite
Mint Julep Masque by Queen Helene is a great item to maintain in your first aid kit. It can prevent infection from dog bite and other puncture wounds. It will also reduce inflammation.
My dachshund had a severely herniated disc in his back. I tried some homeopathics with him before taking him in for surgery in December 2009. During the time he and I were house-bound before surgery, we slept only a few hours at a time. He was tired. I was tired. Early one morning, I tried to move one of his front feet to get him to lie down and rest, and he bit me. Since he had essentially no control over his back legs at that time, I was totally disrupting his balance and stability. It was really stupid of me, but as I said, we were both tired.
Sebastian after Back Surgery
Dog Bite Wounds
Being an Occupational Therapist doing hand therapy for my last 6 1/2 years of my Air Force career, I had treated several clients with infections after dog bites. These clients were referred from the hand surgeon and needed to be seen 3 to 5 times a week for several weeks. I did not want to have this kind of inconvenience! Besides, I still had my little man to take care of.
My wounds were small, and clearly would not require stitches. I had a small laceration-like wound on the inside (toward the middle finger) of my right index finger. On the palmer surface of my right index finger, toward the thumb side, I had 2 bruising puncture wounds. I had another small laceration-like wound to the top of my left hand.
I asked my brother to go to Sun Harvest (now Sprouts) and ask one of the clerks what I could do to prevent infection after dog bite puncture wounds. The clerk suggested salt water soaks and Helene Curtis Mint Julep Masque. If you have more extensive wounds, you of course would need to be seen by a medical provider.
Implimenting the Plan
I used about ½ cup of Epsom’s Salts in about 2 quarts of warm water to soak my hands about 3 times a day. I soaked in cold water, similar to contrast baths, or used a Karo Syrup cold pack afterward to prevent further swelling. I then used a Q-tip to apply the masque. After handwashing, the masque still essentially adhered to the open wounds, and did not need re-application.
My index finger on my right hand was 5 mm bigger at the base compared to my left, and 7 mm bigger at the distal joint, near the nail. After 2 days using Epsom salts and the masque, the redness (indicating inflammation) around the wounds had subsided. By the 3rd day the swelling had gone down and I could make a full fist again. I stopped the protocol about day 5, but still applied the masque about once a day. By 2 ½ weeks, the skin was completely healed on my wounds.
A week or so later, I had a routine follow-up with my Naturopath. He told me I could use ledum 30C after dog bite wounds or other puncture wounds, 9 drops per day, or 200C, 1 to 2 times per day for 5 days. This is also good for insect bites. For prevention of infections, including tetanus, he recommended 200C, one time per week, for 2 or 3 doses. Of course, you should discuss this with your Alternative Medicine provider. I am relating this just to provide information that there are options for those of us who have embraced alternative and holistic medicine options, and prefer to avoid prescription drugs.
We keep this on hand at our house. It is great to prevent infection, reduce swelling and inflammation, and speed healing.
Sebastian Getting Out of the Way
© 2009 rmcrayne