Frequently Asked Questions on Silicone Dressings


What are soft silicone dressings?

Soft silicone is the soft and tacky part of the family of solid silicone. Soft silicone dressings are covered with a hydrophobic soft silicone layer that is tacky to touch. Tackiness ensures the dressing stays intact, so wear time can be longer facilitating healing and patient comfort. Silicone dressings do not stick to the moist wound bed allowing for easy removal. They adhere gently to the surrounding skin and minimize trauma on removal without leaving adhesive residue on the skin. Silicone possesses low toxicity thus making adverse reactions rare. It is not absorbed by the body therefore making it ideal for dressing wounds.

What are soft silicone dressings used for?

Soft silicone dressings are used for low-to-highly exuding wounds involving pressure ulcers, traumatic wounds, partial thickness burns and skin graft fixation. These dressings are suitable for patients both young and elderly, especially those with fragile skin and sensitive to pain during dressing change. They are not meant to absorb heavy fluid but work well as wound contact layers.

How do soft silicone dressings work?

Soft silicone is tacky and soft. The tack helps form a seal around the wound, creating multiple adherence points on the skin. Silicone possesses stable and quick-adhesive profile unlike acrylic adhesives and so is a great bonding agent. The tacky quality of the dressing allows retention of its adhesive quality thus making repeated application possible. Silicone’s hydrophobic property prevents adherence towards moist wound bases therefore it does not cause trauma.

What are the types of soft silicone dressings?
  1. Primary wound contact layers: These are not absorbent but allow exduate to pass through into an absorbent secondary dressing. They are thin, made of flexible polyamide net and non-adherent to the wound bed. Most appropriate for superficial wounds including skin tears, burn wounds and blistering diseases. 
  2. Silicone adhesive in foam dressing: A soft silicone wound contact layer is incorporated into the foam absorbent dressing. The silicone layer creates a gentle bonding between the dressing and the wound, ensuring that fluid is absorbed by the dressing and does not escape to the skin surface.
  3. Silicone gel sheets: Silicone sheets with gel are thicker and do not need secondary dressing. These can be used on healed wounds for minimizing hypertrophic and keloid scarring.
What advantages do soft silicone dressings offer over other dressing types?

Soft silicone dressings provide more benefits than conventional dressings. These include:

  • Lesser trauma
  • Less discomfort during removal
  • Lesser maceration
  • Minimized treatment cost