- Steam baths, hot bath water, tipped-over coffee cups, hot foods, cooking fluids
- Contact with flames or other hot objects like a fireplace, curling iron, heated clothes iron, stove
- Chemical burns caused by swallowing things like drain cleaner or watch batteries, or spilling chemicals, such as bleach, onto the skin
- Things that can explode and cause burn like cigarette lighters
- Electrical burns from biting on electrical cords or sticking fingers or objects in electrical outlet
Burns can be broadly divided into three categorised based on increasing severity:
- First-degree burns: Affects just the outer layer of the skin. The skin appears red and swollen, causing pain to your infant.
Takes three to six days to get healed. The superficial skin layer may peel off in one or two days.
- Second-degree burns: Impacts even the second layer of the skin. The skin will be bright-red, swollen, and all blistery. The infant generally experiences severe pain. Signs would include welling, redness, drainage or pus, odour, swollen lymph nodes, fever, or red streaks on the skin.
Takes three weeks to get healed properly, depending on the burn’s severity.
- Third-degree burns: Impacts all the layers of the skin and underlying tissues. The wound looks charred, black, white, leathery, or waxy. However, there may be no pain because the nerves in the skin may have been damaged too.
Healing takes a long time. In severe cases, skin grafting (healthy skin is taken from another part of the body and surgically placed over the burn wound) may be needed.
Once a burn injury is detected, follow these quick remedies to soothe your child’s pain:
- First of all, remove the child from the heat source
- Remove any clothing from the burnt area, or else it will get stuck to the wound
- Run cool water over the burnt injury to soothe the wound and pain. Do not use ice, as it may cause more harm
- Apply aloe gel or cream to the affected area; butter, grease, powder should be avoided as they can make the burn deeper and spread more infection
- Administer acetaminophen or ibuprofen for pain
- Do not break any blisters, and contact a doctor if you think that the wound or burn is very deep and the child is writhing in pain
- If there is a fire source near the body, cover it immediately with a warm blanket or jacket, to douse the flames (if any)
- In case of burns caused by electrical appliances or wires, make the power source is turned off, before touching your baby
- Make sure your infant does not scratch the burnt area; this would irritate the skin and cause infection
- In case if the baby faints or suffers a concussion after the injury, rush him immediately to the doctor, as a CPR may need to be administered
Some common steps that can be followed to prevent burn injuries are:
- Never hold your child while cooking; keep the handles of pots and vessels away from the child’s reach
- Never warm baby bottles in the microwave oven. The liquid may heat unevenly and cause internal scalding
- Baby-proof your house to conceal harmful inflammable objects, wire, irons, and other appliances
- Apply sunscreen to your child when you venture outside to avoid excessive tanning and scalding of your baby’ skin
- Keep matches, lighters, chemicals, and lit candles out of kids’ reach
- Also, install smoke alarms in your house to reduce the chances of house fires. Also keeping an extinguisher for use in case of an emergency is advised.
- Be careful of stubbing cigarettes and keeping lighters away from the reach of your children