Each year, around 500 children in Western Australia present to the Perth Children’s hospital with a burn or scald injury with one-third requiring admission. More than half of the children who were admitted to the hospital were under the age of five years old.
Throughout June, Kidsafe raises the awareness of burns prevention and the use of correct first aid. Kidsafe provides valuable resources online and through our social media platforms.
Applying the correct burns and scald first aid within the first three hours of the initial burn can significantly reduce the burn size and depth of the injury. Approximately 70% of all children who sustain a burn injury receive the correct burns and scald first-aid.
First Aid Treatment for Burns
If your child does suffer a burn or scald, follow these steps to correctly treat the injury:
- REMOVE – Remove yourself from danger and remove any nappies or clothing from the child so heat can escape.
- COOL – Place the burn under cool running water for at least 20 minutes. Do not use ice, butter, or any ointments on the burn as this can cause further damage.
- COVER – Cover the burn with cling wrap or a clean damp cloth.
- SEEK – Seek medical attention if the burn is bigger than a 20 cent piece, or starts to blister. In an emergency, call 000 for an ambulance.
There are many things we can do within our home to reduce the risk of a burn and scald injury in children:
- Keep small children out of the kitchen.
- Never hold a child while preparing or consuming hot food and drinks.
- Always check the bath water temperature before placing your child in the bathtub.
- Make sure the cold tap water is used first and last so the spout is left cool.
- Set the thermostat on your hot water delivery system to a maximum of 50 degrees. Hot water from the tap at 60 degrees can cause a full-thickness burn in a matter of seconds.
- Smoke alarms save lives. Make sure you have them installed and changed the batteries yearly on the 1st of April. Some hardwired smoke alarms may contain a backup battery.
- Use barriers around fire hazards and always supervise children around heaters and fires.
For more information on Burns Awareness Month and preventing burns and scald injuries click the links below: