I’ll bet you’ve been burned in some way – whether by steam, heat, chemicals, electricity, sunlight or radiation – at some point in your life.Â You may have been scalded by hot water or steam.Â Either way, you may have experienced swelling, blistering, scarring, and pain.Â Perhaps, the area later became infected.Â Some burns are so severe that they could lead to shock or death.
Types of Burns
There are different degrees of the severity of a burn.Â The degree to which you have been burned will determine the depth of the burn, which will affect the treatment you receive and the resulting outcome.
First Degree burns cause damage to the outer layer of your skin only.Â The area is likely to be red, sore, moist, swollen, itchy and/or sensitive to touch.
Second Degree burns cause damage to the outer layer and the layer just beneath.Â Although more severe, this burn does not necessitate a skin graft.
Third Degree burns, the most serious type of burn, cause damage to or destruction of the deepest layer of skin as well as the underlying tissue.Â Skin grafts are needed to cover the exposed area and to help encourage new skin growth.
Tips for Burn Prevention
Prevention is key.Â Consider the following ways which could help keep you and your loved ones safe (some are obvious):
Handle hot liquids carefully.
Check the condition of electrical cords.
Safely store and label household chemicals and other items, such as matches and lighters.
Handle fireworks with care, especially since they are a leading cause of burns, and supervise the children who handle fireworks.
Set the hot water heater for lower than 120 degrees Fahrenheit.
Have your children sleep in flame resistant pajamas.
Use sunscreen with at least 15 SPF.Â Apply at least 20 minutes prior to sun exposure and remember to reapply.
Check the temperature of the seatbelt before buckling in your child.
How to Treat Burns
If you do receive a minor burn, you may already know the following suggestions for handling the injury.Â
First, place the burned area under cool water for about ten minutes.Â This helps to stop the burn process.Â Do not use ice or iced water, which could cause more damage.Â Butter and oil are other â€œno-no’sâ€ as they can prevent healing because heat cannot escape.Â You can gently wash and apply an aloe-based cream, and it is a good idea to cover the burn with a dry, sterile bandage.Â Safe amounts of Vitamin C, Vitamin E and Zinc as well as antibiotic creams are helpful in promoting healing and/or preventing and treating infections which result from a burn.Â Pain relievers may be used as directed to help with inflammation and pain.Â
Chemical burns are different.Â Clothing on which the chemical has spilled should be removed.Â Rinse the area with running water for 15-30 minutes.Â Large amounts of water are necessary.Â Dry chemicals should be brushed from the skin with a clean cloth if no water available.
See a doctor immediately if you have been burned on the eyes, mouth, face, hands, feet or genitals, or if you have been burned over a large area.Â Immediate medical attention is always suggested if your burn has been caused by an electrical source.Â
Children and the elderly are more likely to experience complications, such as infection, from burns.Â Watch for infection which may be present if there is an increase in redness, pain, swelling, fever, or if red streaks radiate from the burn area.Â Seek immediate attention.
Severe burns can be one of the most traumatic types of injury.Â If you or your loved one has suffered a severe burn injury as the result of another’s negligence or carelessness, call me at (504) 799-0663 or Toll Free at (888) 696-6049. We have experience in handling severe burn injury cases. We will investigate the incident and get to work on getting you the compensation you deserve.