How to Treat Rug Burn

A rug burn is a type of friction burn, which comes from the damage caused by the force of your skin rubbing against a surface 1. Rugs burns are among the most common type of friction burn. Like any other sort of burn, treatment of a rug burn depends on the severity of the burn injury and the location 1. Large rug burns, or those located on sensitive areas such as the face, hands or feet should be attended to by a medical professional to prevent infection and other complications 1.

Run cool water over the rug burn to remove any debris or foreign objects, avoiding infection 1. The cool water will reduce the burning sensation in the burned area. You can also dampen a clean cloth and fold it until it is the size of the rug burn 1. Press it to the burn injury to relieve pain symptoms.

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Consider applying burn cream to the burned area to speed healing, prevent infection and avoid scarring. If you do not have burn cream available, try aloe vera lotion or gel. You can also try an antibiotic cream, such as Neosporin. An over-the-counter pain reliever, like acetaminophen, can also take care of most of the pain associated with a rug burn 1.

Prevent further irritation to the burned area by applying a loosely wrapped gauze bandage. The bandage should be clean and sterile. You could also use a clean cloth if a gauze bandage is not available.

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Seek medical treatment for a serious rug burn, or one that affects more than one layer of skin 1. These are more prone to infection than minor ones. You should also seek medical treatment if you have an immune deficiency. Even if your minor rug burn has been healing on its own, you should see a doctor if you notice the burn injury leaking pus or experience an increase in pain over time 1. These are signs of an infection.


Do not apply ice or butter to the burned area. This can cause tissue damage and promote infection and other complications.


If your rug burn is bigger than a handprint or on your face, hands or other sensitive parts of your body, you should seek medical treatment to prevent infection.