A burn that occurs on the foot can be a very serious condition. Typically burns to the feet happen for a few reasons:
- People who have no or little sensation in their feet place them in scalding water without realizing it.
- People who have no or little sensation place their feet on or near a furnace and do not realize that their feet or burning.
- Work-related injuries in which scalding fluid or metals come into contact with the foot accidentally.
- accidents in the kitchen in which hot fluids are dropped on the floor and consequentially on a persons feet.
These are just a few examples of how a burn can occur on the foot, but there are many other instances that can happen. The reason that a burn is serious on the foot even though it only involves a small surface area is for several reasons:
- the foot has very little soft tissue between the skin and the muscles, bones, and tendons.
- The foot is responsible for bearing weight and sustains a tremendous amount of friction in doing so.
- The skin on the bottom of the foot is thicker and contains sweat glands, so therefore if it is damaged, it is hard to find the same type of skin to replace it.
There are different degrees of burns that you should be familiar with.
First degree burns (like a sunburn or mild heat burn) are red in appearance, very painful, and are very sensitive to hot and cold temperatures. These burns will usually heal without any complications.
Second degree burns are those which are red but then also develop a clear blister. These are less painful once the blister has developed. If you have this type of burn, you should consult a doctor. When these burns are on the feet, taking oral antibiotics and dressing the burns are preventative measures that should be taken to avoid complications.
Third degree burns are very serious. They are not painful and have blood blisters that form in that area and the skin appears white. You should definitely seek medical care if you have sustained this degree of a burn even though it may not be painful for you.