SKIN ABRASION : Causes, Effects and Natural Remedies

An abrasion is a special kind of skin damage that happens when the epidermis, the skin’s outermost layer, is scraped or rubbed away by friction or shock.

Abrasions are a particular kind of wound that develop when the top layer of skin is removed. Numerous factors, such as slips and falls, accidents, and sports injuries, can result in abrasions. They may also be brought on by long-lasting illnesses like psoriasis or eczema.

The top layer of skin is the only part of an abrasion that is affected by a first-degree abrasion. The top two layers of skin are affected by a second-degree abrasion, and all layers are affected by a third-degree abrasion.

Abrasions can be avoided by adopting measures to reduce frictional forces and safeguard the skin. This may entail engaging in safe practices, keeping an area clean, and donning the proper protective gear, such as knee pads or gloves. In order to promote healing and prevent infection, treatment usually includes washing the wound, administering an antiseptic ointment, and covering it with a sterile dressing.

Abrasions may bleed and cause pain. If not taken care of properly, they may also contract an infection. Cleaning the wound, putting on a bandage, and keeping the area dry are the normal steps in the treatment of abrasions.


  • sliding across difficult terrain. The most frequent reason for abrasion is a fall, a slide over the ground, or being struck by anything.
  • wear and tear that is repeated. When you repeatedly brush your skin against anything rough, like when using sandpaper or participating in a sport that requires a lot of running, this might happen.
  • A hard object’s pressure or impact. This can occur if you fall onto anything hard or are struck by something like a ball or rock.
  • Sports and Recreational Activities: Playing sports or participating in recreational activities can make abrasions more likely. Abrasions can result from falls, collisions, or contact with rough surfaces while participating in activities like contact sports, cycling, skating, or rock climbing. These activities expose the skin to frictional forces that can harm the skin because of their nature.
  • Adventures in the outdoors: Rough terrain, branches, rocks, or thorny vegetation may be encountered while hiking, camping, or exploring the outdoors. The likelihood of rubbing against abrasive materials while walking through dense vegetation or uneven terrain increases.
  • Accidental impacts: Abrasions can result from unintentional impacts with items or surfaces. Frictional wounds on the skin can be caused by bumping into objects, cutting corners, or abrasive walls. These collisions could happen as a result of mishaps in diverse contexts or during routine operations.
  • Remember that these explanations offer a distinct viewpoint and should not be regarded as a comprehensive list of causes. According to unique circumstances and scenarios, different things might lead to different types of abrasions. Abrasion risk can be reduced with the use of appropriate safety measures, safeguards, and environmental awareness.
  • Mild to severe abrasion is possible. While minor abrasions can only result in a little bit of bleeding and discomfort, serious abrasions might result in significant amounts of edema, pain, and bleeding. Abrasions can occasionally result in an infection.


  • The top layer of skin is removed when an abrasion takes place because it happens when the skin rubs or scrapes against a rough surface.
  • frequent Names: Scrapes, grazes, and skin abrasions are some of the more frequent names for abrasions.
  • Abrasions are regarded as superficial wounds because they often affect the epidermis, the skin’s outermost layer.
  • Common Causes: Accidental accidents, sports injuries, contact with abrasive surfaces, or friction from outdoor activities like cycling, skating, or playing games can all result in abrasions.
  • Abrasion is the friction-induced wearing down of a surface.
  • There are numerous potential causes, such as: 
  • Rub against a challenging surface
  • Sandblasting Grinding Cutting
  • Both natural and artificial materials can be harmed by abrasion.
  • Abrasion in the human body can result in skin injuries including scrapes and bruises.
  • Teeth can be harmed by abrasion, which over time causes them to deteriorate.
  • Abrasion can be avoided in a number of methods, including:
  • putting on safety equipment, such as gloves and goggles
  • carefully using sharp instruments
  • Don’t rub your hands on rough surfaces.


  • Abrasions frequently cause regions of skin that are rough and sensitive. The skin’s top layer is scraped off, revealing the layers beneath. The skin that is affected may appear red, swollen, and touch-sensitive.
  • Abrasions may result in superficial bleeding because they harm the skin’s tiny blood vessels. Usually, there is little bleeding, and it ends fast. Small blood spots or streaks may form on the abrasion’s surface.
  • Abrasions may cause pain or discomfort, especially in the beginning. Due to the exposed nerve endings in the injured skin, the affected area may feel tender and sensitive. Depending on the size and location of the abrasion, the level of pain may change.
  • Pain. Deep abrasions in particular can cause excruciating discomfort.
  • Redness. Frequently, the skin around the abrasion will be puffy and red.
  • Bleeding. Although bleeding from abrasions is possible, how much depends on how bad the wound is.
  • scraped surfaces. It’s possible to scrape or abrade the skin around the abrasion.
  • trash or dirt. It’s possible that grit or other material from the area where the damage occurred is present in the abrasion.
  • Swelling. The area of skin near the abrasion could enlarge.
  • Blisters. Blisters can occasionally develop as a result of abrasions.
  • Infection. An abrasion might develop if it is not properly cleaned and managed. Redness, swelling, discomfort, warmth, and drainage are signs of infection.


Most bleeding is minor and ends spontaneously.

  • Temperature and Touch Sensitivity: The exposed nerve endings in the injured skin may increase the area’s sensitivity. This increased sensitivity can be uncomfortable when touched or caused by temperature fluctuations.
  • Function Impairment: Depending on where the abrasion is, there may be a brief impairment of function. For instance, a knee abrasion might make it difficult to walk or comfortably bend the knee.

Open wounds provide a point of entry for bacteria and other organisms, increasing the risk of infection. Infection risk exists if proper wound care is not followed. Increased redness, warmth, swelling, pus, or greater pain are all indications of infection.

Depending on how severe the injury is, abrasion may be painful.

  • Infection: An abrasion can get infected if it is not properly cleaned and managed. Infections present with redness, swelling, warmth, and pain.

Deep abrasions may leave scars. The depth of the damage and the individual’s capacity for healing both influence how severe the scarring will be.

Abrasions can be unpleasant, especially if they are on joints that support weight, such as the knees or elbows.

  • Loss of function: It may be challenging to move when there are wounds near joints or other motion-dependent areas.
  • Productivity loss: Abrasions can make it challenging to work or attend school.


  • Clean with light Soap and Water: To begin, gently wash the abrasion with lukewarm water and light soap. This aids in cleaning out any debris and bacteria that may be on the skin.
  • Aloe vera gel : Aloe vera gel should be applied because of its well-known calming and restorative qualities. Pure aloe vera gel should be applied in a thin layer to the abrasion. It can have a cooling effect, aid in reducing inflammation, and encourage skin regeneration.
  • Utilise Honey: Honey’s inherent antibacterial properties can aid in preventing infection in abrasions. Apply a small amount of honey to the injured area, then bandage it up. Two to three times per day, change the bandage and apply honey again.
  • Cream : The herb calendula contains anti-inflammatory and wound-healing qualities. It can be used as a salve or cream. Use a cream or salve containing calendula on the abrasion to soothe the skin, lessen inflammation, and speed up healing.
  • Muesli: Muesli is a natural exfoliator that can aid in clearing the abrasion of dirt and debris. Make a paste by combining 1/2 cup of muesli with 1 cup of warm water. After applying the paste to the abrasion, wait 10 minutes before removing it. Wipe the area dry after rinsing the substance away with warm water.
  • Tea made from chamomile flowers: Chamomile tea’s anti-inflammatory and antibacterial characteristics helps speed the healing of cuts. A chamomile tea bag should be steeped in boiling water for 5 minutes. Apply the tea to the abrasion with a cotton ball after allowing it to cool slightly. Allow the tea to rest on the burn for ten minutes. Wash the area with warm water to remove the tea, then pat it dry.
  • Keep the Abrasion Moist: Maintaining moisture around the abrasion might promote a healing environment. To keep the region moisturised, you can dab on a small coating of petroleum jelly or a natural moisturiser like coconut oil. This can facilitate quicker healing by preventing the formation of a dry scab.
  • After using any natural cure, keep the abrasion covered with a sterile bandage or dressing. By doing this, the area is shielded from sand, bacteria, and additional irritation. To keep the bandage clean, change it frequently.
  • Keep in mind that these herbal therapies can be used in addition to conventional medicine to cure small abrasions. It’s crucial to get medical help if the abrasion is severe, excessively bleeding, or exhibiting infection symptoms. 
  • Chemicals that produce pain, such histamines, can be released as a result of abrasion.
  • The skin’s protective natural barrier may be damaged by abrasion, which increases the risk of infection.
  • Skin that has been abraded may become dry and itchy.
  • Keloid scars, which are elevated, red scars that can be exceedingly challenging to cure, can develop as a result of abrasion.
  • The skin may become hypersensitive from abrasion, making it more prone to irritation.


  • Clean the Wound: Use mild soap and water to gently wash the abrasion. This aids in clearing the wound of any debris, bacteria, or dirt.
  • Apply an antiseptic: After cleansing, saturate the abrasion with an antiseptic solution or spray. Infection risk is decreased and bacteria are killed as a result. Chlorhexidine or povidone-iodine are two common antiseptics.
  • Use Topical Antibiotics: Apply a lotion or ointment containing a topical antibiotic to the abrasion. This aids in healing and infection prevention. Bacitracin or neomycin are a couple of examples of topical antibiotics that are frequently used.
  • Take soap and water to the abrasion to clean it. Infection-causing filth and debris will be removed thanks to this.
  • Use an antibiotic cream. This will aid in the healing process and help to prevent infection.
  • Put a bandage over the wound to protect it. As a result, the abrasion will stay clean and wet.
  • Every day, change the bandage. This will lessen the chance of the wound getting unclean or infected.
  • Keep an eye out for infection indications. Visit a doctor if you notice any of the following symptoms:
  •  Redness
  • Swelling Pain
  • Warmth
  • Drainage

*Disclaimer: This article is for informational purposes only and should not substitute professional medical advice. Please consult a healthcare professional for a thorough evaluation of your symptoms and appropriate treatment.

Author Contribution: Reviewed by Dr. Ram Reddy, MD – General Physician, and Rajeshwar Rao, Pharm D.

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