Kids and Burns — Here’s What to Know and Do

According to the American Burn Association, almost one-quarter (24%) of all burn injuries occur in children under the age of 15, with 1,100 children dying each year from fire and burns.

More than 136,000 children were seen in emergency rooms for burn injuries in 2011.

During National Burn Awareness Week (observed the first full week in February), follow these safety tips from the ABA to keep your little ones safe from burns and scalds.

In the Home

  • Set water heater temperature to no higher than 120°F/48°C, or just below the medium setting.
  • Create a “no kid zone” in the kitchen around stoves, ovens and hot items.
  • Keep hot drinks away from the edge of tables and counters and use a travel mug with a tight‐fitting lid for all hot drinks.
  • Place pots and pans on the back burner with handles turned away from the edge of the stove.
  • Never leave a child unattended in the bathtub; if you must leave, take the child(ren) with you.
  • Don’t let young children adjust the water temperature or sit near faucet handles.
  • Keep hot items (electric cookers, coffeemakers, serving bowls with hot foods) out of the reach of children.
  • Don’t let appliance cords (slow‐cookers, deep‐fryers, coffeemakers) dangle over the counter edge.

Burn First Aid

If your child does get burned, cool the burn with cool (not cold) water to stop the burning process, then remove all clothing and/or diaper from the injured area.

Cover the area with a clean dry sheet or bandages and then seek medical attention.

For more information and resources, visit the American Burn Association’s website.