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Causes of burns and prevention

One of our main aims is to raise the awareness of the incidence and causes of burn and scald injury in the UK. By working with other charities, community groups and Government we are highlighting the dangers, helping to reduce the number of burns and scalds happening to children

Top causes

Tea coffee scald

Hot drinks

30 babies and toddlers go to hospital with a hot drink burn every day and hot drinks also cause 60% of all under 3 paediatric burn attendances to Accident & Emergency Departments. These figures are even more disturbing when the vast majority of these accidents are entirely preventable by simply keeping hot drinks out of reach.
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Reaching for a saucepan handle can be tempting – turning the handles away from the edge of the counter or cooker and using the back rings keeps them out of reach of little hands.
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Kettle cords are a temptation, but if you push the cord to the back of the worktop, or use a kettle with a short or curly flex, you will be able to keep them out of reach.
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Hair Straighteners

As much as 40 minutes after being unplugged, hair straighteners can still severely burn and permanently scar a child’s delicate skin. After use, switch off and unplug hair straighteners, then put them away to cool down out of reach and sight of children.
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Pipes, radiators and towel rails are all common causes of burns and scalds. Cover any low-level hot pipes with insulating material if you can, in case children fall against or touch them.
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It is predicted that this year 500 children and their families will join the growing number of people who will remember bonfire night for the wrong reasons. They will have been injured as a result of an accident with fireworks.
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Sun Safety

Babies and children need extra protection from the sun. Their skin is much more sensitive than adult skin, and damage caused by repeated exposure to sunlight could lead to skin cancer developing in later life.
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Hot Water Bottles

Hot water bottles can be dangerous and cause burns if they are not cared for or used properly so please read our advice thoroughly and take care.
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Hot Water Scalds

Hot water from taps can cause serious burns to children. Always run cold water before hot and test the temperature with the back of your hand. Never leave a child alone in the bath, even for a second.
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Non-burn skin loss conditions

Non-burn skin loss conditions

There are some medical conditions that can cause significant skin loss in children and young people to such an extent that they are referred to a specialist burn service for management of their wounds.
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A burn injury is for life

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