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Facial Cut Fixed With Skin Glue: How to Care for Your Child

Some cuts on the face heal on their own, but others need to be fixed. Sometimes health care providers fix cuts with skin glue instead of stitches. Skin glue works well on flat areas of the face, like the forehead and the cheeks. A healing cut can get infected, so the health care provider cleaned it carefully. You can help to prevent infection by taking good care of the cut as it heals.

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  • Don't let your child take baths or swim for a week.

  • When your child showers, there is no need to cover the cut, but try not to let the showerhead spray directly onto it. After showering, gently pat skin dry.

  • Don't put any kind of ointment on the cut. Ointment can dissolve the skin glue.

  • Don't use a bandage unless the health care provider tells you to.

  • To prevent infection, your child shouldn't pick at the glue or at the scab that forms over the cut.

  • After the glue has fallen off, when your child is in the sun, you should apply sunscreen to the scar as you would for any skin. This will help protect the scar from burning and prevent it from getting darker.

  • Make sure your child's tetanus vaccine is up to date.

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  • Your child has redness, warmth, or swelling around the wound. This could be the start of an infection.

  • Red streaks are coming from the wound.

  • Pus is draining from the wound.

  • The edges of the wound start to separate.

  • The medical glue comes off before the cut has healed.

  • Your child develops pain or a fever.

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The wound:

  • starts bleeding and the bleeding doesn't stop after applying light pressure

  • opens up

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What happens when a cut fixed with skin glue heals? Skin glue holds the edges of a cut together while it heals and helps protect the wound from infection. Slight redness or itchiness around the wound is normal. After 7–10 days, the wound should be healed and the glue will fall off on its own.

Why does a cut get a scar? When the deeper layer of the skin is injured, the body uses a protein (collagen) to help fill in the cut area. The filled-in area becomes a scar. A scar will form even if a cut is fixed with skin glue. Over time, some scars fade or get smaller.

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