How To Use Medical Tape: Proper Application & Removal
Medical tapes come in handy in many kinds of situations, and its various types are designed for different applications. This is why it is imperative to know how to use medical tape. Sure, you may own a first aid kit with all its necessary components. However, that is not enough assurance that you can use them the right way. Using these medical items can be tricky, and knowing how to use them is not that difficult.
In building a survival kit, medical tapes should always be included along with your other necessities. In the same light, you need to know how to use medical tape. You also need to have adequate knowledge about the items in your survival kit. Let's start with medical tapes. With no further ado, here are some things that you need to know about medical tapes.
Types of Medical Tapes
The manner of applying medical tape is reliant on its variation. These medical tapes vary when it comes to the materials, use, and other features. To acquaint yourself with the uses of medical tape, here are some of its variations.
Paper Medical Tape
This type of medical tape is lightweight and breathable. Rest assured, it offers secure adhesion, is gentle on the skin, and works on top of regularly changed bandages. If your skin is "At Risk," you do not have to worry about using a paper medical tape on top of it. This is one of the safest medical tapes when it comes to severe wounds.
Zinc-Oxide Medical Tape
Zinc-Oxide Medical Tape is soothing on delicate skin. It reduces the chances of tape burns or skin tears when you remove it. It is also designed for extended wear and can adhere to sweaty, wet, and oily skin. This medical tape has exceptional adhesive powers since it can be worn in the shower. Ostomy patients find this type of medical tape helpful since it is flexible enough to work with various skin conditions.
Silk Surgical Medical Tape
A surgical silk medical tape is conformable, soft, and perfect for almost all kinds of medical applications. It is easy to tear and may be used for home and surgical settings. Most people also go for this type of medical tape since it is hypoallergenic and permeable. If you have rampant skin allergies or sensitive skin, this is the perfect medical tape for you.
Plastic Medical Tape
This medical tape is breathable and transparent. Most of the products under this type are easy to tear, offer strong adhesion, and usable with exam gloves. It is also ideal to use for medical devices and securing dressings.
Cloth Medical Tape
Cloth Medical Tapes are conformable, soft, and have high adhesive material to hold catheters, tubing, and wound dressings in place. This type of medical tape has a cloth-like nature, which makes it a flexible one for ease of movement.
How to Use Medical Tape?
Here are some tips on how to use a medical tape properly:
- Apply tape to a dry and clean surface. Make sure that the skin is clean before the application.
- If you want the tape to perform better, use a skin prep wipe before direct application.
- Do not stretch the tape. Medical tapes are not designed to withstand tension. If you apply tension to some medical tapes, it could cause damage to your skin.
- Use an adequate amount of tape around the affected area. This should extend about a half-inch beyond the dressing.
Are Medical Tapes Skin Friendly?
If you have sensitive skin, you should go for the 3M medical tape since it is skin-friendly. It has a wide range of other medical tapes wherein you can do a skin tape after reading the product description. When you buy a medical tape, test it first on a patch of skin that is not a part of your wound care or medical device. After that, leave the tape in place, so see how your skin reacts to it before applying it to the actual area of injury. What constitutes "skin-friendly" is not the same for everyone since every person has different skin sensitivity. This is a reminder that you should always perform a skin test.
How Do I Remove Medical Tapes Painlessly?
There are various hacks and ways on how to remove medical tapes without pain. However, most people resort to adhesive removers. If you are planning to remove yours using the latter, start at the edge of the medical tape. Dab the remover along the edge until you notice that the tape begins to loosen from your skin. Repeat this step until the bandage is completely removed.
Be patient in removing the medical tape. Do not pull the bandage forcefully. Since you are using an adhesive remover, you have to be gentle. This is to avoid causing damage to your skin by letting the adhesive remover do all the work for you.
How Do I Remove the Adhesive Residue?
Once you remove the adhesive residue, wipe the adhesive remover gently back and forth. Repeat until the residue is completely removed. Once you feel that the stickiness is no longer there, wash that portion with a bar of mild soap and lukewarm water. If you are planning to add new medical tape, make sure that you wipe the area thoroughly until it is completely dry.
Now you know how to use medical tape. All that is left to do is apply what you have learned in case of emergencies and accidents. Remember that there are different kinds of medical tapes, and their usages are also different. Make sure that you familiarize yourself with the rules and guidelines to prevent any skin damage. You may purchase medical tapes at pharmacies or online medical supply stores. Assess the injury before finalizing your purchase.
April 16, 2020
by: Franco Harris
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