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Electric shock and burn treatments

Treatment

Check if the person is conscious and breathing. Gently touch and talk to the person. If there is no response, get help by calling triple zero (000) and start CPR.

Even if they are conscious and breathing, you should call triple zero (000) for an ambulance if the person:

  • lost consciousness, even for a second
  • is breathing very fast or very slow
  • has a heartbeat which is very fast, or very slow, or irregular.

If you do not call an ambulance, you should still visit the nearest emergency department as soon as possible.

Self care

Electrical burns can be more serious than they seem, so they should be assessed in an emergency department. In the meantime:

  • put the burnt area under running water for at least 20 minutes
  • take simple painkillers like paracetamol
  • leave any blisters alone
  • do not apply anything to the burn, such as ointment, cream, oil, butter, spray, or any other household remedy (except cold water).

Not sure what to do next?

If you are still concerned about your electric shocked or electric burn, why not use healthdirect’s online Symptom Checker to get advice on when to seek medical attention.

The Symptom Checker guides you to the next appropriate healthcare steps, whether it’s self care, talking to a health professional, going to a hospital or calling triple zero (000).

Last reviewed: July 2015

Need more information?

These trusted information partners have more on this topic.

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Electric shock | Better Health Channel

Read more on Better Health Channel website

Electrical goods | Kids Health

Electrical goods are machines powered by a form of energy known as electricity. They are used in households to perform a range of everyday tasks, such as boiling a kettle or blow drying your hair.

Read more on Sydney Children's Hospitals Network website

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