Burns prevention - practical tips

Burns prevention - practical tips

Young skin burns more quickly and deeply than adult skin, and at lower temperatures. See some practical tips for preventing burns.

Young skin burns more quickly and deeply than adult skin, and at lower temperatures. A safe temperature for hot tap water is between 50 and 55 degrees Celsius.

  • keep hot drinks away from young children and never nurse a child while holding a hot drink
  • keep kettles and kettle cords where children can't reach them
  • cook on the back elements of the stove first
  • turn pot handles toward the back of the stove
  • avoid heating babies' drinks in microwaves - if you do use them, always shake the bottle well once it's heated
  • always supervise young children at bath or shower time and when they wash their hands
  • keep matches and lighters out of children's reach, and teach them to take matches or lighters to an adult straightaway if they do find them
  • secure candles in a candleholder with a wide base and keep them away from anything that will burn easily, such as paper and curtains
  • put all candles out before going to sleep or leaving a room
  • never use candles in bedrooms
  • never leave cooking unattended
  • make sure all electrical appliances are in good working order
  • don't overload power points or multi-boxes
  • always turn electric blankets off before getting into bed and have them checked yearly by a qualified electrician
  • remember to always run cold water into the bath before you run the hot water
  • a safe temperature for hot tap water is between 50 and 55 degrees Celsius - if the water in your home seems too hot, ask a registered plumber or local energy supplier to check it and turn it down
  1. Safekids; Accident Compensation Corporation (ACC thinksafe); New Zealand Fire Service - Whakaratonga Iwi; Burn Support Group Charitable Trust, Inc. 2004. Be burn and fire wise.
  2. Safekids. April 2010. Child burn injuries factsheet.

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The Paediatric Society of New Zealand wishes to thank Safekids Aotearoa for permission to reproduce this information.

This page last reviewed 29 July 2017.
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