Emergencies are common in every home. Children are always getting into trouble in one way or another. This is perhaps how they learn, by experimenting with all kinds of objects. Parents must therefor expect to have troubles even with the best-behaved children. They must know what to do in an emergency, whether it involves children or adults.

Here are few suggestions about Burn Emergencies :

Burn are serious, not only because of pain in the area of the burn itself, but also because of possible chemical changes in other parts of the body. Burns are among the most common household emergencies. Young children are often burned by hot liquids, stoves, radiators, unguarded electric outlets, firecrackers, chemicals, irons, gas fires, and sunburn. The greatest danger arises from shock, which so often follows a deep burn involving a large area of the body.

In severe burns the loss of body fluids can be very serious, particularly in a young child. The kidney and adrenal glands may not function well, and other internal organs may be vitally affected. Even a relatively small burns may produced a serious deformity if it occurs over a large joint, such as the knee. Deep burns often result in the formation of considerable scar tissue. If this scar  tissue interferes with the function of the joint, it should be removed by plastic surgery.

Treatment: Minor burns can usually be treated at home. Immediate application of ice or the coldest water you can get will often limit the extent of damage. Apparently it takes a few seconds at least for the heat to “soak in” so that immediate application of cold has some neutralizing value. It also limits the amount of pain. Ice is useful from the standpoint of pain even some hours after the burn has occurred. After the cold treatment, you may gently sponge the area with soap and warm water, then apply a Vaseline dressing. Bandage this firmly in place. The pressure helps to control the pain and minimize the loss of body fluids. If the pain is severe, give the patient one or two tablets of aspirin and repeat this every two hours as needed. Be sure the patient is protected against tetanus. Most doctors advice everyone, young and old, to take a series of tetanus toxoid injections.

Severe burns involve the deeper layers of the skin and usually cause large blisters. If necessary, cleanse the skin first, removing all contamination by means of soap and water. Large blisters may be opened and drained. For this purpose, use a sterile needle, or a knife blade that has been passed through a flame. Apply Vaseline gauze to the burned area and bandage firmly in place. If more than 10% of the body has been burned, the patient should be hospitalized without delay. Burns are always more serious when face, hands, feet or genital organs are involved. If the victim is in shock, but is still conscious, give him sips of warm water. Carry him gently to hospital.

Never give any liquid to an unconscious person.

Chemical burns are often serious, and may result in deep scars. Strip of all contaminated clothing immediately, and wash the area thoroughly with plenty of water. If possible, allow the water to run over the burn area for several minutes. If the chemical is a powerful acid, try to neutralize it with moist packs soaked in a weak solution or juice from a lime. Carbolic acid burns, apply wet packs as suggested above, and take the patient to the doctor.

Steam and dry heat burns should be treated as any  other severe burn. If the patient is feeling weak, give him a warm drink. If he is unconscious, keep him lying down, but do not attempt to give him any liquid.

Electrical burns : Treat as for severe burns (see above)

Sunburn: Apply olive oil or cold cream to the burned area. Keep the patient quiet, lying down if at all possible. Aspirin may be used to control the pain. Ice packs and cooling applications, such as a towel dipped in ice water, can be applied to the burned skin to relieve the pain. Calamine lotion has also been found helpful. If the patient has been burned he should be taken to hospital.