Burns Dressings

Aloe vera is often used by people to treat burns, especially in the case of sunburn. Many over the counter treatments for sunburn contain aloe vera. Does it help the healing process or not?

Several studies have been done on this question, some say yes, some say no, some say maybe. Firstly, it should only be used on superficial burns and not on broken skin i.e. full thickness burns. It does have a moisturising property so is said to help replenish the fluids in to a burn. It is also said that it may act as an antibacterial agent, mixed reviews have been reported on this.

In other studies, aloe was applied to partial thickness burns, where is slowed the healing process when compared to other treatments.

It is often said to make the skin feel cooler when it has been burned, some argue that this is worth using it, even if it does nothing else.

So what’s the bottom line? There is no agreement, at present as to whether aloe vera helps, hinders or does neither.


Further reading
University of Maryland Medical Centre, http://umm.edu/health/medical/altmed/herb/aloeNY Times, http://www.nytimes.com/2008/09/09/health/09real.html?_r=2&adxnnl=1&oref=slogin&adxnnlx=1222004943-f8srIydXTu3Sls2rpsY5lQ&
WebMD, http://www.webmd.com/vitamins-supplements/ingredientmono-607-ALOE.aspx?activeIngredientId=607&activeIngredientName=ALOE