What is a Chemical Burn? Its Symptoms, Causes & Best Treatment.


Chemical burns can occur when the skin or other body parts come into contact with a harmful chemical. They can cause significant damage and pain, leaving individuals with lifelong scars and other complications. In this blog post, we will explore the symptoms and causes of Chemical Burn and the best treatment options available. understanding chemical burns is essential for protecting yourself and those around you.

What is a Chemical Burn?

Chemical burns are injuries on the skin, mouth, internal organs, or tissue damage on the body caused by exposure to a corrosive substance. Chemical burns can occur if you come into contact with harsh substances such as bleach, battery acid, and disinfectants. 

Chemical burns can happen at home, in factories, laboratories, construction works, farms, and schools. Chemical burns can happen from accidents or an assault. The risk of chemical burns is very high in workplaces, especially in laboratories and manufacturing plants where these chemicals are used in large quantities. At home, these injuries are less likely to occur.

Types of Chemical Burn:

Chemical burns are classified into 3 categories based on the amount of damage.

Superficial or first-degree burns

Superficial or first-degree burns only affect the top or outer layer of the skin, which is called the epidermis. The burn-affected area is red and painful, these burns don’t have any permanent damage. With proper treatment, these burn scars are healed over time.

Partial thickness or second-degree burns

Partial thickness or second-degree burns affect deeper into the second layer of skin which is called the dermis. These burns have blisters and swelling which may leave scars.

Full-thickness or third-degree burns

Full-thickness or third-degree burns will go through the skin and may damage tissues underneath the skin. The infected area will look black or white. we may not feel pain because the Nerverse gets destroyed at the time of the burn.

Who is at Risk of Chemical Burns?

Any person who deals with harsh chemicals is at risk of a chemical burn, here are some examples:

  • construction workers
  • Factory workers
  • Laboratory
  • Schools
  • Mechanics 
  • Plumber
  • Military personnel

The risk of chemical burns is very high in workplaces, especially in laboratories and manufacturing plants where these chemicals are used in large quantities. Children are at risk of burns caused by household chemical products, kids may accidentally touch or swallow detergents, bleach, or cleaning products.

Causes of Chemical Burns?

When your skin comes into contact with harsh chemicals, and acids they go inside the skin and damage skin tissues and cells of the body. The damage may go inside the outer layer of the skin and harm the tissues underneath that. Chemical burns are extremely dangerous compared to thermal (heat) burns, as they stay longer periods of time on the skin affecting the body cells and tissues. 

Chemical burns are caused by many substances. some of the most common causing chemical burns are : 

  • Battery acid.
  • Bleach & Drain cleaners
  • Hair relaxers & products.
  • Paint removers.
  • Fertilizers &Pesticides.
  • Sanitizers and disinfectants.
  • Swimming pool chemicals.
  • Metal, rust removers, & Toilet bowl cleaners.
  • Ammonia
  • Concrete mix and Wet cement
  • Drain or toilet bowl cleaners
  • Tooth-whitening products

Symptoms of Chemical Burns?

Most Chemical burns show immediate symptoms and all chemical burns are medical emergencies which is treated immediately. many chemical burns happen on the face, eyes, arms, and legs, these chemical burns are very minor and will require only outpatient treatment. 

Some Chemical burns deceiving, however, they can cause damage tissues at a deeper level. 

How are Chemical Burns diagnosed?

Chemical burns are handled by the emergency care team quickly evaluate the injury and stabilize your condition. They will determine the extent of the injury, utilizing blood tests and other studies to gauge the next process of treatment and whether treating them with medicine or surgery is necessary. While most people with chemical burns can be sent home with follow-up care, severe cases may require a hospital stay. They focus on treating the injury quickly and effectively as possible. 

How are Chemical Burns treated ?

Chemical burns require immediate treatment to minimize tissue damage and promote healing. Here are some steps for treating chemical burns:

Remove the chemical: If the chemical is still on the skin, remove any contaminated clothing and flush the affected skin part, and eyes with water for at least 20 minutes.

Seek medical attention: If the burn is severe or covers a large area of the body, seek immediate medical attention.

Dressing the wound: Keep the wound clean and dry. A healthcare professional may dress the wound in a special dressing or cream to promote healing.

Follow-up care: Follow up with a doctor to ensure proper healing and monitor any signs of infection.

It’s important to note that the treatment for chemical burns may vary depending on the severity of the burn and the type of chemical involved. It’s always best to seek immediate medical attention. 

Some More Precautions to take like…

Drink water:

Drink water to dilute any chemicals you may have ingested in your intestines if you did. Don’t use any medication to induce vomiting. Chemical compound intoxication can result in

First aid

Burns can occur from many sources such as heat, chemicals, electricity, or radiation. First aid for burns can help reduce pain and minimize tissue damage. Here are some general steps to follow for first-aid burn treatment:

Remove the source of the burn: If the burn is caused by heat, immediately remove the source of heat such as hot water, flames, or a hot surface.

It’s important to note that the first aid for burns may vary depending on the severity and type of burn. For example, chemical burns may require different first aid procedures than heat burns. Additionally, it’s always best to seek immediate medical attention if you have any doubts about how to treat a burn.


A Chemical burn occurs when a substance such as a strong acid or base comes into contact with the skin or other body tissues, causing damage. The severity of the burn depends on factors such as the type of chemical involved, the concentration, and the duration of exposure. At KBK Multispeciality Hospital we treat the wound with utmost care our expert doctors provide treatment with the utmost care, understand the severity of burns, and treat them with medication, dressing, and antiseptic treatment for the skin.


1. Are Chemical Burns permanent?

Whether or not a chemical burn is permanent depends on several factors, like the severity of the burn & the type of chemical involved. Some chemical burns may heal over time, while others can cause permanent damage to the skin, eyes, or other affected areas. Chemical burns can cause both immediate and delayed damage to the skin, depending on the type and concentration of the chemical involved.

2. When do chemical burns go away?

The healing time for chemical burns can vary depending on the severity of the burn and the type of chemical involved. Minor chemical burns that only affect the top layer of skin may heal within a few weeks, while more severe burns that penetrate deeper layers of the skin may take several weeks or even months to fully heal. It’s important to consult doctors for any chemical burn, as early treatment can help minimize tissue damage and reduce the healing time. Additionally, following proper first aid procedures and taking precautions to prevent chemical burns can also help promote faster healing.

3. How long chemical burn last?

The duration of a chemical burn depends on various factors, including the severity of the burn and the type of chemical involved. Minar chemical burns that affect only the top layer of skin heal within a few days to a week, while deeper chemical burns that went multiple layers of the skin may take several weeks or months to heal. The healing process may also be affected by the individual’s overall health, the area of the body affected, & effectiveness of treatment. 

4. Will chemical burns leave a scar?

Whether or not a chemical burn leaves a scar depends on various factors, including the severity of the burn, the type of chemical involved,& effectiveness of treatment. Superficial chemical burns that only affect the top layer of skin may not leave a scar, while deeper chemical burns that cause multiple layers of skin are more likely to cause scars. Additionally, burns that are not properly cleaned and treated can increase the risk of scarring. 

5. Why does chemical burn itch?

Chemical burns can cause itching as part of the healing process. When the skin is damaged, it releases histamines and other substances that cause inflammation and itching. This is the body’s natural response to injury & is intended to help with the healing process. The itching sensation can also be a result of nerve damage caused by the chemical burn. In addition, the use of certain medications or treatments for the burn can also cause itching. While it can be uncomfortable, itching is a normal part of the healing process for chemical burns. However, it’s important to avoid scratching the affected area to prevent further damage and potential infection.

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