(2/02/12) - Safe Kids Pee Dee/Coastal reminds families to take caution during Scald and Burn Month (February) as well as year-round. Injuries from scalds and burns are some of the most painful and severe that children can suffer. Fortunately, most of them can be prevented by making a few easy modifications in the home and by teaching your family what to do in case of an emergency.
According to Safe Kids, the leading cause of burn-related hospitalizations and emergency room visits among young children is scalds (a type of burn injury caused by hot liquids or gases). Among children under 5 years of age, hot water accounts for nearly 50 percent of all scald burns associated with nonelectric cookware.
Additionally, hot tap water is responsible for more deaths and hospitalizations than any other hot liquid burns. Tap water burns most often occur in the bathroom and tend to be more severe and cover a larger portion of the body than other scald burns. A recent survey found that only eight percent of adults felt that the bathroom was a high risk for burn and scald incidents.
To prevent such injuries, reduce your water temperature by setting your water heater thermostat to120 degrees Fahrenheit. Children's skin burns at a lower temperature and more deeply than that of older children and adults. Be sure to test bathwater with your wrist or elbow before placing your child in it. Also, consider installing anti-scald devices on water faucets and shower heads that turn off water if the temperature is too hot.
For more information on preventing injuries in children, visit the Safe Kids website at www.safekids.org.
Safe Kids Pee Dee/Coastal works to prevent unintentional childhood injury, the leading cause of death and disability to children ages 0 to 14. Its members include Florence County Sheriff's Department, City of Florence Police Department, South Carolina Highway Patrol, and the City of Florence Fire Department. Safe Kids Pee Dee/Coastal is a member of Safe Kids Worldwide, a global network of organizations dedicated to preventing unintentional injury. Safe Kids Pee Dee/Coastal was founded in 1995 and is led by McLeod Health, and funded in part by the McLeod Health Foundation.