Burns in Children

Burns in Children

Your curious kid has fun exploring, however she might burn her wandering hands by touching hot things or by putting her fingers (or mouth) where it does not belong. Luckily you can come to your child’s rescue if you understand the ropes for treating a burn (accidents happen!).

You’ve kissed enough boo-boos to know that childhood injuries are all too typical– and burns in children rank as one of the most frequent accidents. (The leading culprit? Heating from hot liquids, which is why brushing up on tub safety is a need to). There are tons of methods to prevent burns in children (like childproofing your home, however if a burn does take place, you ought to know how to treat it.

From kids cleaning up under a too-hot faucet to an accidental tipping of a coffee cup, burns are a prospective hazard in every home. In truth, burns, specifically scalds from hot water and liquids, are some of the most typical youth accidents.

Burns in children vary in their seriousness– and are classified by degrees:

  • First-degree burns affect simply the external layer of skin. Your child’s skin will be red and swollen skin and she’ll be in some pain.
  • Second-degree burns involve the first and 2nd layers of skin. Your child’s skin will be bright-red, swollen, and blistery, and she’ll remain in severe pain.
  • Third-degree burns include all layers of the skin and underlying tissue. Your child would have an injury that looks charred, black, white, leatherlike, or waxy. She may not be any pain due to the fact that the nerves on the skin are damaged.

Burns in Children


First different your child from the source of heat as quick as possible.

  • If any part of a child is on fire, wrap her in a blanket, coat, bedspread, and even your very own body, and (if you can) roll her on the ground to extinguish the flames.
  • If a chemical substance has burned your child’s skin, flush the area with cool water for at least 5 minutes prior to getting rid of any clothing– this will avoid you from exposing any other parts of your child’s body to chemicals. Then continue flushing the area with water for as much as 20 minutes. If the chemical is a powder, brush it off the skin before flushing the area with water.
  • If your child has actually experienced an electrical burn, disconnect the power source. If you cannot do that, separate your child from the power source by utilizing a nonmetallic object (such as a wooden spoon, a rope, or a large book). Never use your bare hands (you risk getting a shock, too).

Next, treat the injury– though treating a burn depends upon how severe it is:


  • Get rid of any clothing from the hurt area. Keep in mind that when it comes to a chemical burn, you’ll wish to flush the area with water for numerous minutes prior to getting rid of any clothes.
  • Run cool water over the injury for a minimum of five minutes or up until your tot appears to be in less pain. Or put a tidy, cool damp fabric (or washcloth) on the burn for several minutes or up until her pain subsides– you’ll most likely need to continue re-wetting the fabric to keep it cool. Do NOT use ice, butter, or powder to the injury considering that this could exacerbate it. And do NOT break any blisters considering that this makes the injury more vulnerable to infection.
  • Carefully pat the skin dry and cover it loosely with a nonstick sterilized plaster or gauze to protect the skin.
    Give your kid a painkiller such as acetaminophen or ibuprofen (but don’t offer ibuprofen to babies under 6 months).
  • Call the doctor. Your pediatrician may recommend applying aloe or another topical ointment like Silvadene (for which you’ll require a prescription) for treating a burn, however minor burns typically heal without a lot more treatment. Simply watch for signs of infection– redness, fever, swelling, or oozing. Depending on the burn, the doctor may advise you to avoid exposing the area to sunlight for numerous months to avoid your child’s skin from becoming tarnished.


  • Remove hot or smoldering clothes only if the clothes don’t stay with the wound. Remember that when it comes to a chemical burn, you’ll want to flush the hurt area with water for a number of minutes prior to removing any of your child’s clothing.).
  • Lay your little one flat, and, if possible, raise burned body parts above her chest level. Use a cool washcloth (or any clean, lint-free fabric) for 10 to 20 minutes. Keep in mind that you may need to re-wet the washcloth occasionally to keep it cool. Don’t immerse large areas of her body in cold water because this could cause shock.
  • Do NOT apply ice, butter, or powder to the area considering that this might aggravate the wound. And do NOT break any blisters because this makes the injury more vulnerable to infection.
  • Carefully pat the hurt area dry and cover the burn with a sterilized cloth or bandage (or a cool, lint-free sheet). Keep your child as warm and comfortable as possible to avoid shock.
  • Call a doctor as quickly as possible (for a severe burn, call 911).


When dealing with a burn, it is very important to call the doctor as quickly as you’ve handled the injury. Call 911 as quickly as possible if the list below conditions apply:

  • You believe your child has a serious or large second- or third-degree burn.
  • The burn comes from a fire or is an electrical or chemical burn. (In the case of an internal chemical burn– your child has actually swallowed drain cleaner, for example– call Poison Control instead at 800-222-1222.).
  • Your child is having trouble breathing or isn’t responding.


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