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Preventing Accidents During Burn Awareness Week

fire coming from a pan

Three Things to Know About Burn Safety

The World Health Organization estimates that over 180,000 deaths are caused by burns annually, and millions of others encounter trauma like extended hospitalization, disfigurement, and disability as a result of these injuries. Each year, the first full week of February is recognized as Burn Awareness Week, aiming to educate the public about severe burns and how to prevent them. Here are three things you should know.

#1. Burn Severity

Few people may know that there are six levels of burn severity that one can experience, although most individuals will only encounter those ranging in the one-to-three range.

  • First-degree burns only affect the outermost layer of skin (epidermis), usually in the form of a sunburn.
  • Second-degree burns affect the two outer layers of skin (epidermis and dermis) and may require skin grafting. Patients may also experience scarring.
  • Third-degree burns are deep, penetrate both layers of skin, and often cause underlying tissue damage. These require skin grafting and extensive hospitalization in most cases.

Third-degree burns and beyond are often considered catastrophic and significantly affect the patient's quality of life. Anything past a third-degree burn results in permanent damage to the skin, muscles, and bones and can often be life-threatening.

#2. Causes of Severe Burns

While most people know that you shouldn't play with fire, there are many other causes of major burn injuries that often go overlooked. Burns can also be caused by:

  • Hot liquids or steam
  • Electrical currents
  • Chemicals
  • Hot objects, especially metal or glass
  • Radiation

It's also important to note that second-degree burns can result from prolonged sun exposure, although rare. Those who spend a lot of time outside or have young children should be mindful of using sunscreen and other forms of protection (clothing, hats) to reduce their possibility of severe sunburns.

#3. Discussing Burn Safety with Young Children

It's never too early to educate young children on burn safety and what they can do to prevent these injuries. Having an open conversation about the dangers of being near hot objects or other burn hazards and the potential consequences can help them better understand its importance.

Your family or classroom can also discuss a fire safety plan to help them know what to do in an emergency. While most schools have a dedicated fire drill system, teachers can discuss why these drills are important and other fire safety measures students should know.

Law Offices Of Vic Feazell, P.C. is dedicated to ensuring you and your loved ones’ safety is of the utmost priority and is here to help you in the worst case scenario. If you were severely burned at the hands of another individual, we are here to help. Call (254) 938-6885 to schedule a free consultation with a member of our team today.