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According to Halacha, is it permissible to apply bandages on your skin on Shabbat? Or would it involve any problem, rabbinic or biblical?

Would it depend on whether you tear the band-aid’s wrapping before Shabbat?

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R Eliezer Melamed (Peninei Halakha, Shabbat 28:9) answers your question

One may use an adhesive bandage (“Band-Aid”) to protect a wound or a sensitive area from the friction caused by clothing or other objects. Even one who is bothered by a mild ailment may do so, since an adhesive bandage does not cure but merely protects (SA 328:23). [...]

Le-khatĥila, one should try not to attach the ends of the adhesive bandage to each other and to avoid using an adhesive bandage to keep a cloth bandage in place. This is because some maintain that these cases are rabbinically prohibited, as sticking one item to another in such a manner resembles Tofer. If necessary one may be lenient and rely on those who maintain that since adhesive bandages are affixed temporarily, for a short period of time, one may do so just as one may tie a temporary knot that lasts only a short time.

(see the original further for additional sources)

R Yisroel Pinchos Bodner and R Daniel Roth (MD) add (Halachos of refuah on Shabbos, pp. 328ff) that

  • One may rip open the bandage wrapper
  • If possible, one should avoid ripping the printed words on the wrapper, if not possible and for a serious wound one should try with a shinui, if not possible one can do it normally
  • it is preferable not to remove a bandage on Shabbat if it will cause hair to rip, bit one may do so if it is causing pain
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  • What’s the reason for being allowed to rip open the wrapper? Why isn’t it koraya Feb 11 at 0:10
  • The footnote says it is not koreya and cites Hazon Ish based on MB OC 314:28
    – mbloch
    Feb 11 at 4:25

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