February 4- 10, 2018 is National Burn Awareness Week. By sharing burn awareness and prevention messages to communities, we hope to keep individuals free from burn-related injuries. In 2013, Safe Kids Worldwide states that 126,035 children under the age of 19 were seen in emergency rooms for treatment of fire and burn related injuries.
An overwhelming 73% of burn-related injuries occur at home. For children five years old and younger, the burn-related injury rate increases to 95%. Children have thinner layers of skin than adults, meaning they sustain deeper burn injuries at lower temperatures and shorter exposure times. Of all scald burn injuries, 62% occur to children less than five years of age.
These tips will help reduce the risk of burn-related injuries and ensure homes are safe for children:
Keep an eye on irons, curlers, and other heated appliances to ensure children are not around them when plugged in and heated. Make sure to unplug all appliances when you are done using them.
Make a habit of placing matches, gasoline, and lighters in a safe place. Avoid novelty lighters that look like toys.
Do not leave a stove that is in use unattended. Children should stay at least three feet away from stoves.
Use the back burners on the stove and turn pot handles away from the edge.
Keep hot foods and liquids away from the edge of tables or counters and avoid using tablecloths that children can pull off the table.
If children are too young to read and follow directions to cook food in the microwave, do not allow them to use the microwave without supervision. For older children, teach them to use potholders when removing items from the microwave and open lids away from themselves to avoid scalds from steam.
Set your water heater to 120 degrees Fahrenheit (48 degrees Celsius) or just below the medium setting and always check the temperature of bathwater before placing your child in the tub.