Burn injuries affect all types of individuals. However, young children and the elderly are more prone to getting burned than others due to their sensitive skin. Burn injuries can occur by getting in contact with boiling liquids, hot objects, chemicals, electricity, cold, heat, fire, and friction, among many others.
Burn injuries can lead to permanent scarring, with severe cases requiring skin graft surgery. The tragedy in all of this is that individuals can avoid burn injuries by taking precautions and ensuring compliance with safety regulations (having a fire extinguisher) put forward by the state and local laws.
Immediate Burn Treatment: Step-by-Step Guide
If you’ve gotten burned, following the steps below immediately can reduce the pain and severity of the burn:
- Immediately run the burn wound under tap water (ensure the water temperature is cool rather than cold, as the wound can risk hypothermia) for about 20 minutes. Many victims run the wound under tap water for a few seconds before panicking and heading to the hospital. This doesn’t seem right, as the wound can burn if it is not washed correctly. Avoid using ice to prevent burns, as ice can cause further blistering, worsening the burn wounds.
- Remove the clothing from the burned area after washing the wounds. Leaving burned clothes on the skin can irritate but avoid removing the clothing article if it is stuck to the skin. Pulling or jerking on it can remove the layer of the skin, further worsening the wounds.
- Use a sterile cloth or a sterile gauze pad to clean the wound and if it is oozing, seek medical help immediately. You don’t want an infection to start as it can further complicate things.
- Consult a physician if the burn sensation remains after a few hours following the burn injury. Avoid using home remedies on the burn wound, like butter, grease, and others, as it can worsen the injury.
- Wash chemical burns immediately and contact the Poison Helpline at 1-800-222-1222 or your physician.
Protect Young Children and Your Family with Burn Safety Precautions
Burn injuries are easily avoidable by taking preventable safety measures, and this can further avoid any worse situations in case of fire breakouts.
Here is how you can safeguard your family from any fire hazards:
- According to state laws, rental homes and apartment buildings must have fire alarms to alarm residents in case of fire breakouts. Having modern alarms with long-lasting batteries in your apartment, especially in the kitchen, can help prevent any fire incidents involving residents.
- Start practicing fire drills at home to ensure that the family, including the kids, are ready for any adverse event or a fire spread.
- Keep all flammable liquids and flammable materials away from home as these can cause a tremendous explosion when in contact with the fire resulting in more devastating damage.
- Cover unused electrical outlets to avoid electrical burns if the children try to plug things into them or even their fingers.
Burn Safety Outdoors Precautions
There are also outdoor burn hazards for which you need to take precautions, and these include:
- Do not allow your children to go near grills, campfires, and fire pits, as these can deliver a nasty burn.
- In the United States, temperatures can soar high resulting in high temperatures in a parked car. Before placing your children or baby in the car, ensure that the seat belt and the seats are not hot; if they are, place a towel before placing your child.
- Avoid using fireworks. Even if you do it in a safe and controlled environment, your children might learn how to use it and go about using it when not supervised, which can be a considerable danger.
Scalding Burns and Hot Foods
Scald burns are different from fire burns as these happen when the skin comes into contact with hot liquids like boiling water from a water heater, tea, coffee, etc. Surprisingly, more than 30% of the cases that make it to a burn center in the United States are scald injuries. It is not unheard of when mothers to carry hot beverages and their baby causing scald injuries when an incident occurs.
Tips on Dealing with Hot Food with Children Around
To avoid getting scald injuries, here are the five tips we recommend to families to ensure the safety of themselves and their loved ones:
- Never let your children near the oven or wherever you are cooking, as kids have a curious nature, which can lead to them touching hot objects. Ensure that you test food temperature before feeding your children.
- Start using back burners as it does not have any handles, keeping them out of sight from young kids in the house.
- When cooking, make sure you shift all the pots and pans containing the hot food to the middle of the kitchen counter rather than its edges. This is to avoid kids pulling on the utensils and burning themselves with hot liquid.
- Warming baby food in a microwave is not advised as the microwave unevenly heats the food. The food might look cold from the outside, but it could be bubbling hot inside. Heat food for your babies using hot water.
- Keep oven mitts in the kitchen at all times.
How to Prevent Scalds in the Bathroom
There are specific steps one should take to avoid any scald injuries during bath times, and these can include the following:
- Ensure that your water heater is at 120 degrees Fahrenheit; anything above this number can easily result in scald injuries if exposed for too long.
- Ensure you check the bath temperature before letting your children take a bath or placing your baby in the seemingly warm tub. Kids and babies are more sensitive to hot temperatures than adults, and if you feel that the water is not too hot, it might be for the children; hence check the water temperature.
- Water faucets are usually hot if the hot water has been running through them, so it is best to place your child away from the water faucet to avoid touching it.
The main concern when dealing with kids is that they don’t realize their boundaries and let their curiosity get the best of them. Parents must establish “No Go Zones” in the house where kids don’t have access or can’t reach. For example, the radius around space heaters and fireplaces is a no-zone area for young children.
When Is Hospitalization Necessary for Burn Injuries?
Not all burn injuries require hospitalization, as minor burn injury victims can recover at home. However, those facing serious injuries can lead to complications. Hence it is best to get hospitalized to receive medical attention immediately.
Here are a few situations that may require hospitalization:
- Third-degree burns
- More than 10% of the body gets burned
- Burns on the face, hand, genitals, or moving joints
- Young children.
Contact Our California Burn Injury Attorneys for Your Case Today
Have you gotten burn injuries that were not your fault? Is your loved one hurt due to someone else’s negligence? Our attorneys are personal injury experts and can help determine the cause of the incident, investigate and collect evidence and help you establish an individual injury case to get the compensation you deserve.
Call us now for more information on how we can help you. Contact us at (213) 596-9642 and get a free consultation with our California to burn injury lawyers today.