Editorials

Preventing scalds to children

BMJ 1995; 311 doi: http://dx.doi.org/10.1136/bmj.311.7006.643 (Published 09 September 1995) Cite this as: BMJ 1995;311:643
  1. Alison Kemp,
  2. Jo Sibert
  1. Senior lecturer Professor of community child health Department of Child Health, University of Wales College of Medicine, Llandough Special Children Centre, Llandough Hospital and Community NHS Trust, Penarth CF64 2XX

    Requires environmental modification and work with and by families

    Scalds are among the most distressing injuries that a child can receive. Although they rarely kill, they cause considerable pain, often need prolonged treatment, and often result in lifelong scarring. This scarring and deformity may result in considerable emotional difficulties that can affect the child's whole life. Clearly, prevention is preferable to treatment.

    Eadie and colleagues at the Welsh Centre for Burns and Plastic Surgery have compared the patterns of scalds in 1956,1 1984,2 and 1991.3 Sadly, the numbers of scalds to children at the Welsh centre has not fallen, although the pattern of these injuries has changed. Hot water from teapots caused a fifth of the injuries in 1956 though only very few cases in …

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