Friday, 23 December 2016

Ways To Treat Your Burns


During Christmas your home is likely to be full of people, and in all the excitement accidents can easily happen.

According to NHS Choices, more than 80,000 people a year need hospital treatment for injuries such as falls, cuts and burns during the festive period.

Hot fat, boiling water and sharp knives make the kitchen one of the most dangerous places during the holiday.

Home safety manager at the Royal Society for the Prevention of Accidents, Sheila Merrill, said why we should be especially careful on Christmas day: “The Christmas meal is probably the biggest meal most families cook all year. It needs careful planning to avoid injuries.”

Her tip to avoid injuries happening in the first place is to try and keep other people (especially children) out of the kitchen. Avoid alcohol until you’ve finished cooking and wipe up spills as soon as they happen so that people don’t slip.

But in case someone in your home does suffer a burn or scold, follow St John Ambulance’s advice on the correct procedure to carry out.

In a step by step video, St John Ambulance Trainer Gemma Fairweather explained how a burn or scold should be treated.

“A burn is usually caused by dry heat and a scold is caused by wet heat. You need to stop the burning by cooling the burn as soon as possible. This will decrease the severity of the injury,” said Gemma.

“If someone has a severe burn they may develop shock which is a life-threatening condition and they will need to get to the hospital as soon as possible.”

There are five signs which may be seen when someone has a burn or a scold - red skin, swelling, blisters on the skin, peeling skin, white or scorched skin.

The first step, Gemma said, is to move the burn or scold victim away from the source of the heat to stop the burn getting any worse, and then start cooling it as quickly as possible.

“Place it under cool running water for at least 10 minutes or until the pain feels better,” said Gemma.

“Don’t use ice, gels or creams, as this could damage the tissue and increase the risk of infection.

“If the burn looks like a serous burn or it’s to a child, it’s larger than the size of the casualty’s hand, it’s a burn to their face, hands or feet or if it’s a deep burn then call 999 or 112 for emergency help.”

If possible get someone to call for you while you continue to cool the burn or use a speaker phone if you’re on your own.

Jewellery or clothing near the burn should be remove, unless it’s stuck to it.

When the burn has cooled, Gemma said it must be covered lengthways in cling film.

“Get ride of the first two turns of film and then apply it lengthways over the burn.

“Use a plastic bag if you have no kitchen film. This will protect the burn from infection.

“Never burst any blisters which may have formed as this may increase the risk of infection. Do not use ointments to treat the burns as they may increase the risk of infection.”

Special burns dressings and gels are not recommended and you may also need to treat the casualty for shock.



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