This is a part of the Hot Topic podcast series from the Model Systems Knowledge Translation Center on Sexuality and Intimacy After Burn Injury. Ashley Overturf, OTR, discusses when it may be time to return to sexual activity after burn injury.

Ashley Overturf, O.T.

North Texas Burn Rehabilitation Model System

Parkland Memorial Hospital

I think it’s all about when the survivor is ready. Because usually the partner is ready before the survivor. Occasionally not, because they’re worried about hurting somebody or hurting the wounds or the scars.

Things to think about sort of in the initial phases of recovery, obviously. If wounds are open, you have to be careful of shearing forces. So if they’re open and you’ve got this like kind of rocking back and forth on the wound, it can actually cause more damage. So you want to problem solve through like if my back is open, what can I do differently to not have my wounds touching something that might be shearing.

Be creative in your own sort of body positions when you’re engaged in sexual activity. It doesn’t always have to be in a bed or standing up. Like it can be really anywhere that you’re comfortable with it being.

But really considering the fact that like wounds - where the wounds are matter, especially when it comes to the shearing forces. So you just want to make sure that you’re being cautious not to create larger or deeper wounds by engaging in something more fun.

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