INSTRUCTIONS (Follow them to the letter!)
This isn't to say that unless you get the mush on the burn immediately it won't do any good at all, but the longer you wait the less effective it'll be. My mother's golden rule is: NEVER EAT YOUR LAST POTATO. You never know when you'll need that potato to treat a burn. However, even if you lose a few minutes going next door to borrow a potato or down the street to buy some, it'll probably be worth the effort, especially if you have a bad burn.
Potato can be particularly valuable for more serious burns, where the damage is immediately apparent. It won't, of course, reverse damage like loss of skin; but should prevent the burn from developing further.
I once burned myself so badly while ironing that I left a large patch of skin on the iron. To make matters worse, I was in a rush to get somewhere, so I only had the potato on the burn for about half as long as I probably should have. All the same, the burn had healed over completely within a week, which is pretty good for such a bad burn.
My mother once tipped a cherry pie she was taking out of the oven, spilling the sticky, boiling syrup all over her foot. She washed the syrup off her foot, and then used potato on it for almost four hours. As I recall, all that remained was a slight redness; and the skin peeled a few days later, like a sunburn would. (By the way, potato can also help relieve a sunburn.)
ORIGINS OF THIS REMEDY Haven't a clue! It's been in my family for generations; but I don't know whether it came down through the Irish or the Danish side of the family, or whether it was learned from a neighbour on the Canadian Prairies. I did meet a Danish woman once whose mother put potato starch on burns. Other than that the only reference I've ever seen to the remedy was in the Russian author Maxim Gorky's autobiography, My Childhood, in which his grandmother grated a potato to treat his grandfather's burned finger.
Is anyone else out there familiar with this wonderful remedy?
PASS IT ON
Once you've tried the potato burn remedy and assured yourself that it really works, pass it on!
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