Prevention of Burn Injuries

Burns remain one of the common injuries preventable injuries. Although you can learn how to treat a burn injury, the best bet is not to get hurt at all.

In the United States, they affect more than one million people. And they result in approximately 40,000 children getting hospitalized every year. According to research figures, about 80% of children that suffer burn injuries could have been saved from harm. And this is an injury that could have gotten prevented.

Flames engulf an accident scene.
Fire truck

How Do You Identify the Burn Injury Hazards?

There are potential burn hazards in every home. And the most significant number of children suffering burn injuries occurs in the house. These are accidents primarily in the kitchen and bathroom of the child’s home.

Children can suffer burns from:

  • Sunburn,
  • Household appliances and other causes.

Scalding liquids, however, the most common burn injuries in younger children. Burn accidents with the kids can be as simple as them pulling over a cup of coffee. Sometimes it may be as disastrous as pulling on the handle of a pot of boiling water from the stove.

Burn injuries can also occur when washing their hands under a faucet that is too hot.

Prevention of burn injuries starts with understanding how they can happen and the common causes, like:

  • The number one burn injury involving children scalded. These are often thought of as burns caused by steam. But more often hot drinks, hot liquids, cooking liquids, steam and hot bath or faucet water hurt kids.
  • Burn injuries happen after contact with piping hot objects. So these can be devices like irons, curling irons. In the kitchen pans and other hot objects from a stove, a fireplace and flames are the culprits.
  • Over exposure to the sun, resulting in severe sunburn.
  • Electrical burns that get caused by placing objects or fingers into electric outlets.
  • Chemical burns that get caused by contact with the skin or swallowing chemicals.

Also, burn injuries are rated in degrees, first, second and third. So this can depend on the amount of damage to the skin.

What are the Various Types of Burns?

  • First Degree Burn Injuries: First-degree burn injuries are the mildest type of burn. And these get limited to the top layer of skin. This degree burn can result in redness to the skin, minor swelling, and pain. The skin is dry in a first-degree burn and does not have blisters present.
  • Second Degree Burn Injuries: Second-degree burn injuries are more serious. And more than the top layer of skin gets damaged. Layers beneath the top layer also get injured in this type of burn injury. So it produces blisters, redness and severe pain.
  • Third Degree Burn Injuries: The third-degree burn injury is the most serious type of burn. And this is one wherein all the layers of skin get damaged. We also see tissue damage here. The skin of a third-degree burn can have a dry or waxy appearance. Also, it can be white, brown, leathery or have a charred appearance. Furthermore, this is the one type of burn injury that might not have any initial pain. Because of nerve damage that has occurred the body is not detecting things correctly.

What are Common Everyday Hazards?

Many burn injuries can be prevented before they occur and the ways to avoid these types of injuries at home include:

  • Adjust the hot water heater in your home, so the thermostat is below 120 degrees.
  • When using hot water for baths, begin filling the tube with the cold water first and then turn on the hot. Turn the hot water off first and the cold water off last. This can decrease hot water burns.
  • When placing cooking pots on the stove, ensure the handles get turned in. So that way they cannot get pulled down off the stove.
  • Do not leave utensils in the pots and pans when cooking.
  • Check to ensure that all burners on the stove get turned off when not in use.
  • Use dry pot holders or oven mitts when handling hot pots, pans, and ovenware.
  • Do not hang oven mitts or potholders near the stove or over it.
  • Do use electrical outlet safety covers to protect children from outlets.
  • Use fireplace and wood burner screens when they are in use.
  • Deploy careful handling of irons, curling irons, and other hot appliances.
  • Utilize cool vaporizers.
  • Use cool humidifiers.

If you were scalded or blemished by something scorching, go to the hospital. Then you may want a free legal consultation with a tort attorney. So call Ehline Law Firm Personal Injury Attorneys, APLC. 24/7 we await your call at (213) 596-9642.


Burn Prevention | Child Safety and Injury Prevention| CDC.

Burn and scald prevention outreach materials.