(2/14/13) – McLeod 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 McLeod 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 five 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 childhood injury, please call McLeod Safe Kids Pee Dee/Coastal at (843) 777-5021 to speak to an Injury Prevention Specialist or visit www.McLeodSafeKids.org.
McLeod Safe Kids Pee Dee/Coastal works to prevent accidental childhood injury, the leading cause of death in children 14 and under. McLeod Safe Kids Pee Dee/Coastal is a member of Safe Kids Worldwide, a global network of organizations dedicated to preventing accidental injury. McLeod Safe Kids Pee Dee/Coastal is funded in part by the McLeod Health Foundation.