FREE Shipping on orders over $899

WhatsApp Customer Service

Burns: how to avoid them and how to treat them

Burns: how to avoid them and how to treat them

A splash of oil, contact with the oven grill, a splash of hot liquid, and even prolonged exposure to the sun can cause painful burns. All of them can be avoided with a little caution. It is also important that you are prepared and know how to act in case an accident occurs. Follow these tips to make your home safer for you and your family.

According to the Center for Disease Prevention and Control (CDC), hundreds of people, especially children, arrive at emergency rooms every day with burns caused by hot liquids or steam, or by carelessness in the kitchen. It is essential that you take all necessary measures to prevent one of those people from being you, a child or a loved family member. Let's go by parts:

Preventing burns in the kitchen

This is the area of ​​the house in which the most burns occur and it is logical, since it is precisely the heart of the home, and the place where the food we consume daily is prepared, based on fire and heat!

The measures you must take:

  • Do not walk away from the kitchen while you are cooking, especially if you are frying food. Never leave a pan with hot or boiling oil unattended.
  • Turn the pot handles toward the center or bottom of the stove.
  • Move kitchen towels, plastic or paper bags away from hot surfaces. Likewise, avoid wearing long, wide sleeves while cooking, this way you prevent them from accidentally starting a fire, or getting tangled and tipping over a pot.
  • Never cook while holding a child or pet.
  • Keep children away from the kitchen and never let them approach or open the oven door.
  • Use oven mitts when handling pots and be careful when opening a hot oven, changing racks or turning roasts.

First aid for burns in the kitchen:

Even if all precautionary measures are taken, an accident may occur. If you get burned, do the following:

  • Run cool water over the burned area, or immerse the area in cool water (not cold or ice water), or cover it with a clean cloth moistened with cold water. This step is necessary to remove as much heat as possible from the skin and reduce inflammation.
  • Cover the burn with a sterile bandage or clean cloth.
  • Protect the burn (do not apply pressure and avoid friction). Wrap it with the sterile gauze or bandage without being too tight.
  • Take an over-the-counter pain medicine to relieve pain.
  • Do not apply butter, ice, creams or other home remedies. Don't apply adhesive bandages or cotton balls either (the fibers can stick to the burn and irritate it).
  • If the burn is severe or shows signs of infection (swelling, red edges, and discharge), call your doctor or go to an emergency room.
  • Small burns will heal without the need for further treatment, but some type of discoloration may remain on the skin. Use sunscreen on the area for at least a year to protect the new, more delicate skin.

Preventing burns from hot liquids or steam:

The most common victims of this type of burn are children. Because they also have thinner skin than adults, the burns tend to be deeper.

The measures you should take:

  • Check the water temperature before children get into the bathtub or shower. Do not allow children to move the faucets and alter the temperature during the bath.
  • Never leave children alone in the bathtub.
  • Set the heater temperature at 120º F (49º C) or set it to a low to medium temperature. Hotter water can cause burns within 2 or 3 seconds.
  • Turn the handles of pots and pans toward the inside of the stove, or place them on the back burners.
  • Do not heat baby milk bottles in the microwave. The milk is not heated evenly and can burn the baby's mouth and tongue.
  • Use lids on hot coffee cups when you're with the kids.
  • Keep containers of hot liquids (soups, purees, coffee or tea) away from the edges of the table or kitchen counter.
  • Be careful when uncovering pots with boiling liquids.

First aid for burns with hot liquids:

Take the following steps to care for the burn:

  • Remove clothing that has become wet with the liquid.
  • Cool the burn with fresh tap water for a few minutes.
  • Do not apply ice as it worsens the burn and cuts off blood flow to the damaged area.
  • Do not apply butter or ointments to the burn.
  • Take an analgesic (pain medicine) to relieve pain.
  • Go to the doctor if the burn area is large or very deep or if symptoms of infection appear (inflammation, pain, fever and/or drainage).

Preventing sunburn

It is important to prevent them not only to avoid discomfort and pain, but also because sunburns increase the chances of developing skin cancer, the most common cancer in the United States. To avoid them, take the following measures:

  • Whenever you are exposed to direct sun, use a 30 sunscreen and reapply it every two hours.
  • Wear a wide-brimmed hat to protect the delicate skin of your face, neck and décolleté.
  • Avoid sunbathing during the most intense hours (11 am to 3 pm)
  • Wear long-sleeved clothing if you are going to work in the garden.
  • The sun can also burn the eyes. Wear glasses to protect them.
  • Even if you are in the shade or the day is cloudy, be careful. Don't overdo it and always use sunscreen.

First aid for sunburn:

  • Take an analgesic (pain medicine) to relieve pain.
  • Apply a cream based on aloe vera and keep your skin hydrated. Do it several times a day. The cream will also help relieve the itching you will feel when the skin begins to “peel” and come off.
  • If a blister forms and bursts, apply an antibiotic cream (but don't burst the blister).
  • Don't put butter, ointments, or Vaseline on your sunburn.
  • Avoid clothing that bothers you or rubs you.
  • Do not rub the burn while drying yourself during a bath.
  • Let it heal without touching it much, but if you notice any changes (swelling, fever, or discharge), consult your doctor.

It is also a good idea to have a first aid kit at home with everything you need to deal with any emergency that arises suddenly, including burns. Take a few precautionary measures to minimize the chances of having to use it. And if you want more information about burn care, delve deeper into the topic in this other Life and Health article. A burn is a serious thing, avoid them at all costs!


"Because prevention is better than cure"

Leave a comment

Please note: comments must be approved before they are published.