How much faster does silver sulfadiazine help burns heal? What if you don't use any of it?

Not much. While it is the most popular treatment for burns, there are more advanced treatments that work better and faster. It often causes an eschar (scab) at the edge of burns that actually slows healing, and it is not safe in infants. Hydrocolloid dressings not only speed the healing of burns, they also relieve the pain and need changed much less often than silver sulfadiazine or antibiotic dressings.