Babies and younger children are often at a higher risk of suffering burn injuries. This is typically because they do not perceive danger quickly and are incapable of saving themselves from a life threatening situation. To learn about how to help protect your child when it comes to burns, take a look at this simple guide below.
• Ensure that you keep all flammable materials such as candles, lighters or matches out of children's reach.
• When using a candle, ensure that you place them in a location where pets or children cannot tip them over. Never place the candle close to combustible materials or leave it burning unattended.
• If you are working in the kitchen, keep children away from cooking and heating appliances. If you leave the room, take the child along with you. Never leave the child playing alone in the kitchen.
• Burns and scalds can cause serious injury to children and can sometimes require painful skin grafts and years of follow-up treatment. To prevent scalds in the bathroom, reduce the temperature of the hot tap water at the bath, basin, and shower to 122 degrees Fahrenheit or 50 degrees Celsius. Additionally, install shower heads and faucets that feature anti-scald technology.
• Avoid keeping hot foods and liquids on table and counter edges. Avoid carrying or holding your child and hot foods and liquids at the same time.
• Make sure that you keep the cords of appliances containing hot foods and liquids out of reach of children and pets.
Additional precautions to be taken to reduce the risk of burn injury in children
• One of the best ways to protect children from a burn injury is to install smoke alarms on the entry levels and sleeping areas of your home. However, to keep the alarms in a good working condition, it is vital that you replace the batteries every 6 months and change the alarms every 8-10 years. To prevent injury from different types of fires, it is highly recommended that you install photoelectric alarms (for sensing slow, smoky fires) as well as ionization alarms (for detecting flaming fires.)
• Taking some safety measures such as covering unused electrical outlets with safety devices, and replacing old appliance cords or electrical wires is critical. Not plugging several cords into the same outlet can help prevent an electrical fire, thus keeping children safe from injury.
• While cigarette smoking is discouraged around children, avoid smoking in bed. In addition, ensure that you extinguish all cigarettes before you retire to bed or leave your home.