Burns

One of the most common types of injuries which involve severe skin damage caused by heat, chemicals, electricity, sun exposure, or radiation.

What are Burns?

One of the most common types of injuries which involve severe skin damage caused by heat, chemicals, electricity, sun exposure, or radiation.

Burns are categorized by severity as:

• First-Degree Burns: These tend to be the most common and relatively minor as it affects only the skins surface, the skin may become red and irritated, but it is not likely to blister, these burns will heal on their own with some care and may not require emergency medical attention.

• Second-Degree Burns: A more severe type of injury where the skin will blister and swell. These burns have a high risk of becoming infected and can cause deep scaring.

• Third-Degree Burns: The most severe type of burn causing damage not only to the skin, but to the fat layer beneath it, muscle, nerves, and even bone tissue. These burns require immediate emergency medical treatment.

What Causes Burns?

There are numerous ways a person can be burned, including:

• Direct contact with a hot surface or substance like boiling water.

• Chemical exposure
• Electric shock
• Fires, including those from a grill, candles, matches, or lighters
• Overexposure to the sun
• It should be noted that the cause of the burn does not have a direct correlation with its severity.

 

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How to Prevent Burns

Most burn incidents happen at home, although some jobs carry a greater risk of burn injury than others. Preventive measures everyone can take include:

  • Keep children and pets out of the kitchen while cooking
  • Pot handles should be placed facing the back of the stove never the front
  • Test smoke detectors once a month and replace every 10 years
  • Water heater temperature should never exceed 120°F
  • Test bath water before getting in
  • Don’t leave lighters or matches where kids can reach them
  • Never leave a lit candle unattended
  • Discard electrical cords that are damaged or have exposed wires.
  • Keep chemicals out of reach, and wear proper gloves when handling them
  • Do not use lighter fluid to ignite your grill
  • Always wear sunscreen while outdoors and reapply frequently

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Alarming Signs of a Burn

A Burn does not affect the skin uniformly, this means a single wound can reach varying depths, so it’s possible that some areas only received first-degree burns while others might have suffered a second or third-degree injury.

Burns can cause any of the following:

  • Swelling
  • Blistering
  • Scarring
  • Infection

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