19 answers

How to Treat a Cut on Toddler's Face?

Hi Moms,
My 15 month old fell and got a fairly deep cut by her eyebrow. I know you're supposed to cover the wound with antibiotic ointment and a bandage, but since she's always rubbing her eyes, the bandage wouldn't stay on, plus I was afraid she'd pull it off, try to eat it and choke on it. So I put her to bed with just some antibiotic ointment but she probably won't be able to keep her hands away when she's awake.

To avoid both scarring and infection, what's the best way to treat this wound until it heals? I've heard of the liquid bandage that forms a seal over the cut. Does this work? Can you use it over Neosporin? What else can I do? Thank you in advance.

What can I do next?

Featured Answers

You can call the doctor and get an RX that is ok if it goes in the eye. My daughter had fallen and cut above eyebrow also and we were at ENT for something else and he gave me an RX that really helped. I was not afraid to put it on her eye or get bacitracin in her eye. This worked for her. Also leaving it exposed was fine.

My friend used Mederma for Kids when her toddler cut his eyebrow. I don't notice a scar when I look at him.

More Answers

If it is a really deep cut, you should probably take her in to the ER to get stitches. But if it's not that bad, you can just put steri strips on it. Don't use the liquid bandage! It stings terribly even for me and I can't imagine how much it would hurt a baby. It's basically like glue and smells really bad too. Buy some steri strips to place over the cut. They lay flat on the skin and are much harder to pull off than a band aid. You can use neosporin too. Just make sure to clean the cut really well with some hydrogen peroxide before you put on the steri strips.

As long as the wound isn't too old, you can take her to the doctor asap and they can close it with surgical glue. Since it's her face, I'd take no chances with it! Do not put liquid bandage on it, as they won't be able to surgical glue it if you do.
Good luck!

What about sueter tape? I'm probably misspelling that. But, it's the tape hospitals use when you've had surgery done on magnified level, so the cut is very small. Rather than using stitches, they'll hold it shut with these tiny, clear pieces of tape...sueter (sew-cher is how it sounds). That would keep her from messing with it, and keep it held together.

Not sure why you didn't take her to the doctor if the cut was that deep to see if she needed a stitch, especially if it was on her face. A wound cannot be stitched after 24 hours as it starts to heal itself & can cause infection if stitched too late. I just had stitches in my finger & was told this. Supposedly they sell those steri-strips they use in the hospital to seal wounds. Ask your pharmacist. Besides keeping the ointment on, you need to keep the wound dry for a little while during the day & exposed to air. It will help it heal. Good luck.

If it has been longer than 24 hours, stitches would not be an option. Steri-strips are the next best thing, to help the wound close and heal. They keep dirt and germs away, and are not easily removed by a toddler. To make sure they are done right, I'd take her to the doctor. Have her doctor clean the wound and apply them. Once it heals, apply Mederma for Kids religiously every day. My daughter had a nasty cut under her eye (very sensitive tissue area) and I used the Mederma. She has absolutely no scar. Good luck!

My friend used Mederma for Kids when her toddler cut his eyebrow. I don't notice a scar when I look at him.

I have used liquid band-aides for finger cuts...and you would just spray it on(I think it was a green brand, not band-aide brand) it worked great but it did sting when you put it on...not to mention I wouldn'y spray anything by her eyes(I know they make other kinds but I haven't tried them, so I can't vouch for them)...I would just make sure you wash it and keep it dry(and if it gets red or infected looking call the peditrician for an antibiotic)...and as far as scaring...just make sure you use sunscreen over it once it heals.

Have you tried using those little round band-aids? They usually come in the combo packs. I used them for my daughter (with a topical ointment) when she cut herself right between the eyebrows (same age). If you use the real band-aid brand, it's very sticky and shouldn't come off too easily. Of course if the cut is too big, they won't work. But you could just cut a regular sized band-aid down a bit so she won't have as much to pick at.

I've used those liquid bandages - never been too pleased, honestly. Not sure how it would work on a little one. Maybe your doctor has some advice? Good luck.

- R.

when this happened to my daughter my pharmacist reccomended triple intibiotic ointment spread liberally three times a day but not to worry about covering it up. as long as it was covered with the ointment she would be fine. I did as he suggested and she didnt even have a scar.

It's on her face, and you say it's fairly deep, so take her to the doctor. You don't want to mess around with deep cuts, and especially not on her face. The doctor will clean it out, and if it's that deep, put in a stitch or two. If not, he or she can close it with surgical glue. Just don't take any chances on doing this yourself. If you didn't clean it well enough, and you glue it shut on your own, you could be sealing in an infection.

If it is deeper than 1/4 for an adult, stitches are generally required to close it.

I don't know if this goes the same for an infant/toddler/child.

I don't use antibiotic ointment - it has a tendency to keep in whatever bacteria are left behind after washing, defeating the purpose sometimes. Also, I believe it needs to be washed off and changed.

I would ask your pediatrician before using a liquid bandage. The stuff really smells volatile, and it has a requirement of not using it in conjunction with ointments or other things.

Personally if you are worried about scarring, I would contact your pediatrician ASAP. Not being able to see the cut, I can't tell if it does need a stitch or two.

Good luck,

I'm not sure of the best way to treat the cut,because of the area, but my advice to you, after you get the cut sealed up is vitamin E. If you get the capsules and poke a hole in them to get the oil out, then put the oil on the healing cut, it will not scar. If you can put a little on every night and throughout the day, it's amazing what it can do. My son had an abrasion across his entire forehead and I used the vitamin E and you can't even see a mark. Good Luck.

Call your baby's pediatrician...they will know best.
Best wishes,

G., if the cut is deep enough that you are worried about scarring, I think you need to have taken her to the pediatrician or ER to see if stitches were needed. I would contact your baby's doctor about treatment. Good luck.

Hi G.!

I wouldn't suggest using the liquid bandage, especially that close to the eye. The liquid bandage burns and stings really bad when you put it on. I would just keep using the Neosporin lightly and leave the wound open, it should heal pretty quick. Hope this helps, and that your daughter has a speedy recovery :-)

I used neosporin on my daughter's facial lacerations when she was a toddler. The key is applying regularly so the scab does not dry out and start to itch. One trick to keep your daughter from honing in on the cut is to apply a gentle moisturizer to her entire face when you apply the antibiotic ointment. Once the cut heals it is really important to apply sunscreen (even if it is fall/winter) so the new skin does not burn and appear to scar. Good luck!

You can call the doctor and get an RX that is ok if it goes in the eye. My daughter had fallen and cut above eyebrow also and we were at ENT for something else and he gave me an RX that really helped. I was not afraid to put it on her eye or get bacitracin in her eye. This worked for her. Also leaving it exposed was fine.

Hi G.,

Since your daughter is only 18 months old, I'd avoid both antibiotic ointment & liquid bandage (that stuff works well but stings something fierce). Vitamin E is a great alternative, but you only want to use it at night and loosely cover it because it is not safe to get it in the eyes. Another thing you can try is raw honey, which is used in some nursing homes to heal and disinfect bedsores, etc. Again though, only at night.

Good luck, K

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