A scar can be a reminder we don’t want to see, but avoiding scarring with a chronic wound is difficult. At R Shaheen Vascular in Mountain View, CA, we put our extensive expertise in wound care to work to help you heal quickly and without complications.
Avoid Scarring: 8 Benefits of Wound Care
Chronic wounds can get their start with any kind of injury, but all chronic wounds benefit from professional intervention as soon as possible. Cutting-edge medical techniques combined with the newest technology can get you all the benefits of wound care.
Less Risk of Scarring
When wounds refuse to heal, or when they continuously close and reopen, the chances of scarring become very great. Getting professional help can minimize or even eliminate this risk. At R Shaheen Vascular, we prioritize helping you avoid scars you don’t want.
Promotion of Your Body’s Own Healing Powers
If a wound has been around a while and is not healing, your body may need help to get it done. That’s where wound care comes in. Proper care stimulates your body to engage with the wound and jumpstart the healing process on its own.
Infection is always a risk when you have an open wound, and if a wound is already struggling to heal, infection is the last thing you need. Getting professional treatment greatly reduces the risk of infection in the first place. It also means you have someone to notice quickly if infection sets in and intervene with treatment.
Overall Better Health
Many times, a wound won’t heal because of blood flow deficiencies or nutritional issues. Seeking proper care can pinpoint these issues and allow you to get the treatment you need. Wound treatment also promotes your overall health by allowing you to get back to the healthy activities you may be skipping because of your wound, such as exercise.
Less Risk of Hospital Admission
Admission to the hospital can be expensive and difficult, and many people rightly want to avoid that outcome. Our skilled, professional care can handle even challenging cases and help you heal complex wounds and avoid hospital admission.
Reduced Pain and Discomfort
Open wounds are uncomfortable and can make it hard to engage with life. By seeking treatment, you can reduce your pain and regain mobility and optimal function.
Improved Mental Health and Outlook
A chronic wound can be depressing, and, depending on where it is located, may even keep you from social situations. Your mental health and keeping up a positive outlook on life are important, and proper care for your chronic wound can help.
More Time for What’s Important
Attending to a chronic wound on your own, especially if the at-home techniques you’re trying aren’t working, can easily overwhelm you. It’s not uncommon for a person’s whole life to be wrapped up in caring for a wound. When you seek professional treatment, we can free you from these issues so you can devote more time and attention to the things that matter most.
When to Seek Help
If you’re unsure whether your wound really demands professional intervention, consider the following questions:
- Have you noticed itching or rashes around the wound?
- Is there new pain or swelling that wasn’t there previously?
- Have you developed a fever?
- Are you having difficulty moving the area?
- Does the wound seem to have grown larger or deeper?
- Has the wound been around for a few weeks and is not healing?
- Have you noticed any changes to skin color?
If you answered yes to any of these questions, call us at R Shaheen Vascular for an appointment so we can help you care for your wound.
Understanding Chronic Wounds
Wounds become chronic when they refuse to heal, whatever the reason. However, there are specific things that can be interfering with that healing process.
Poor Blood Supply
If your vascular system has trouble delivering blood to the wound area, the wound will not heal easily. Our blood contains the healing and growth factors needed to produce fresh, new tissue.
Low Oxygen Environment
For wounds to heal, the body has to get oxygen to the area. If the vascular system is compromised, this can be a problem. This can also be an issue if the body is already oxygen-deprived, which can be the case if you’re a smoker or have blood, kidney, lung, or heart disease.
Weakened Immune System
Sometimes the body won’t heal a wound because the immune system doesn’t have the strength to do its job. Cancer and diabetes can weaken the immune system, as can radiation treatments, certain medications and steroids, and even chronically poor nutrition.
Sometimes swelling in the tissues around the wound interfere with healing. This swelling can stop the flow of blood to the area, cutting off the blood supply even in otherwise healthy people.
Sometimes, wounds in otherwise perfectly healthy people refuse to heal or start to heal and then seem to regress. In these cases, infection is often the issue.
What Kind of Wounds Do We Treat?
At R Shaheen Vascular, we frequently treat chronic wounds from surgeries, osteomyelitis, burns, and skin tears after a scrape or fall. We also treat ulcers resulting from diabetes, pressure, peripheral arterial disease, and venous stasis. We can treat them all using a variety of techniques designed to promote fast healing, stop infection, and reduce scarring.
What to Expect
Our goal with wound care is more than closing the wound. We also want you to reach optimal health, and in many cases that means assessing you for nutritional deficiencies or blood flow issues that could be factors in your chronic wound. By doing so, we can increase your body’s ability to fight infection and heal on its own, as well as your overall health, while we target the wound in question. Here are just a few of the techniques that can help:
This is a surgical technique, and the goal of debridement is to remove anything from the wound that could be interfering with healing. Once dead tissue or other debris is removed, the body can more easily form healthy, new tissue. Debridement also removes any bacteria that could already be causing an infection or putting you at risk for one. Your comfort is important to us, and you can expect this process to be done carefully and with the right anesthetics to ensure you don’t feel any pain or discomfort.
Wound VAC Treatment
Wound vacuum-assisted closure treatment is an innovative technique that changes the air pressure around your wound. This negative pressure therapy has some amazing benefits. First, it removes any fluids or wastes from the area, including bacteria that could be causing infection. Second, it brings the edges of the wound together so it’s easier for the wound to heal. Third, it stimulates the growth of new tissue by increasing blood flow to the area.
Advanced Compression Services
Compression can help wounds heal more quickly. Compression services promote better function of your lymphatic system, which is the system tasked with clearing away waste and infection. If you have a wound where fluid has been accumulating, advanced compression may be able to help.
An allograft is a donated human skin graft, but it is more than just skin. It’s made up of a matrix of extra cells that the body naturally uses to promote healing. These include epithelial cells, collagen, stem cells, human growth factors, and fibroblasts. These advanced allografts are very effective at healing complex wounds.
In some cases, wounds don’t need much more than a careful cleaning and the perfect wound dressing. We often use honey dressings to treat wounds, since honey has potent antibacterial qualities. We offer other types of dressings as well, and when you see us, we can assess your chronic wound and decide the most effective way to treat it.
Helping Your Wound Heal
Once you have started professional wound treatment, there are things you can do at home to promote the healing process and get back on your feet as quickly as possible.
It’s never too late to quit smoking, and doing so will help your wound as well as improve your overall health in every way. If you need help quitting, talk to us about resources and information we can suggest.
Avoid Pressure Damage
Pressure damage happens when you either put too much pressure on the wound itself or put pressure elsewhere in a way that cuts off the blood supply to the wound. Remember that the wound needs plenty of blood flow to heal, so avoid lying or sitting in the same position for too long. While sitting, change your position every 15 minutes to promote healing. When you lie down, prop your legs up so they are elevated to promote blood flow.
Check Your Skin Daily
You can help yourself heal effectively by keeping a close eye out for any changes to the wound or surrounding skin that could indicate infection. If you notice changes to the wound or feel increased discomfort in any way, let us know right away.
Eat a Healthy Diet
Your body will heal best when you’re getting optimal nutrition. You can speed along your healing and give your immune system a boost by making sure you get all the nutrients your body needs. While you can take supplements, and these may help, getting your nutrients from your diet is always preferred. While you’re healing, avoid these foods:
- Sugar, particularly refined white and brown
- Processed meats, like sausages
- Processed, pre-packaged foods and snacks
- White flour products
Instead of the above, prioritize foods that deliver the vitamins and minerals you need, like:
- Fresh meats and fish
- Leafy green vegetables
- Whole grains
- Unprocessed dairy products without added sugar
- Fruit, especially berries
For your cells to heal and for your lymphatic and vascular systems to carry blood to the wound and carry waste away, you need to stay hydrated. Don’t be tempted to stop drinking water in order to avoid fluid accumulation around the wound. Drink plenty of water, tea, clear soups, and decaffeinated coffee. Limit your intake of caffeine and alcohol, which are both diuretics that can dry you out and interfere with healing. Severely limit or do away with all sugary drinks, including sodas and most fruit juices: even diet versions.
Get All the Benefits of Advanced Wound Healing
If you’ve suffered an injury and can’t get your wound to heal, there is help available. Advanced wound care can treat even the toughest cases and help you avoid scarring and get back to your previous quality of life. If you’re suffering from a chronic wound, contact R Shaheen Vascular in Mountain View, CA today to set up an appointment. We are experts in wound care, and we can’t wait to put that expertise to work for your healing.