Burns are a potential hazard in any home. There are four kinds of burning hazards that may hurt your child:
Heat burns, also called thermal burns, are caused by contact with
fire, steam, hot objects, or hot liquids. Children younger than age 5 are most
often burned by hot liquids (scalding). Tap water is a leading cause of
Protect your child from heat burns in the following ways:
Keep children away from kitchen appliances,
irons, fireplaces, portable heaters, and wall heaters. Use screens to block off
areas, if needed. When outdoors, keep your child away from barbecue grills and
Install scald-resistant faucets in sinks, showers, and
bathtubs that children use. These fixtures have built-in thermostats to control
the maximum temperature of the water. Set the thermostat so that the water
temperature doesn't exceed
Use kitchen range dial protectors, which prevent a child from
turning on the heating elements of a stove.
Cook with pot handles
turned away from the edge of the stove and on the back burner when possible,
out of the reach of children.
Be careful not to spill hot beverages
when carrying or drinking them around children.
pajamas made of flame-resistant fabric for your child.
Electrical burns are caused by contact with electrical sources or by
lightning. Electrical current passing through a person's body may injure blood
vessels, nerves, and muscles. Also, the throat and lungs can swell
rapidly and severely, making breathing hard. The current can also damage
Protect your child around your home by using the following safety
Place plug covers on all outlets.
Unplug all electrical items in your child's reach.
extra caution when using electrical items in areas where water sources are
nearby, such as using a hair dryer in the bathroom.
your child play with toys that must be plugged into an electrical outlet.
Take your child indoors and close all windows and doors during an
Don't overload electrical outlets by using too
many extension cords or electrical receptacle multipliers.
electrical equipment and appliances that show signs of wear, such as having
frayed or loose wires.
Friction burns are caused by contact with any hard surface such as
pavement ("road rash"), carpets, or gym floor surfaces. Most friction burns
that occur in young children aren't serious. But they can be
uncomfortable and painful. You can help prevent friction burns in the following
Avoid dragging or pulling your child across
carpet while playing.
Provide safety equipment for physical
activities. Two examples are knee pads and elbow pads for roller skating or riding
Chemical burns need evaluation and treatment. Call the
Poison Control Center at 800-222-1222 for specific
treatment for a chemical burn. Have the product container with you when you
Burns can result from contact with a solid, powdered, or liquid
chemical. A chemical burn may be serious because of the action of the corrosive
or irritating chemicals on the skin. A chemical burn on the skin is often
deeper and larger than it may first appear. Chemical fumes and vapors can also
irritate or damage the body, especially the skin, lungs, and eyes. A swallowed
chemical may be poisonous or may cause burning in the throat and
Help protect young children from chemical burns by keeping the
following types of items completely out of reach:
Oven and drain cleaners
Sparks from "sparklers"
If your children use battery-operated toys, make sure the batteries
are in protective casings that require assistance from an adult to open (such
as casings secured with screws).
How this information was developed to help you make better health decisions.