Bandage scissors are often found in first aid kits and in a variety of medical facilities. They are usually made of metal, typically stainless steel, and they often have serrated blades and an angled tip that is blunt at the edges. These scissors have numerous uses that can make them valuable.
The three mains uses of bandage scissors are to trim bandages to custom size, to cut through clothing or gauze, and to help remove bandages that someone is wearing. For this last purpose, the angled blades are extremely important, since they angle away from anything beneath the cutting surface. They help keep the scissors away from the skin so that injury doesn’t occur. The blunt tips also help, since there is less likelihood of piercing the skin, as might occur if sharp tipped scissors were used instead.
Numerous first aid needs may require people to cut rolls of gauze. Gauze can be a little challenging to cut and the serrated blade of bandage scissors is helpful. It grabs the fabric and keeps the scissors in place for more even cutting without any slipping.
Though bandages come in a variety of sizes, and first aid kits may have several sizes available, they still may not be appropriate for the size of an injury or an injury located in a difficult place to bandage. It’s often necessary to trim band-aids or bandages to fit in odd locations, and people with sensitive skin may have a tough time with adhesive bandages. Trimming extra adhesive that is unnecessary to keep a bandage in place can be a good use for bandage scissors.
People may wonder if it’s really necessary to have bandage scissors when they have other scissors available, like manicuring scissors. Certainly, in a pinch, sterilized manicuring scissors can be used in place of medical scissors, but they won’t work as well since they lack serration. Moreover, many manicuring scissors do have pointed tips and great care must be taken if they’re use to remove bandages. Since bandage scissors truly are designed for medical purposes, it really is worth owing a pair, and keeping them in a nearby first aid kit. It’s better to have a few pairs: one for the home, one for any emergency kit, and one for a first aid kit in a car.
These scissors are usually not very expensive, and a set may be included in a purchased first aid kit. Some care does need to be taken once the scissors have been used. When either removing bandages or trimming bandages or gauze, the scissors should be cleaned first (when possible) to avoid infection. Dousing them in rubbing alcohol helps provide quick cleaning, though they are considered clean but not sterile when this method is used. If alcohol is unavailable, most waterless handwash types contain a high amount of alcohol and can help clean off the scissors prior to use. Consider keeping some waterless handwash or some sealed medical cleaning wipes on hand for emergency use to clean medical equipment or to clean cuts.