Every year at Children’s Hospital of Wisconsin, we see children who have been burned. Working in the Burn Clinic, I often hear family members say, “If only I had not left the lighter out where he could reach it,” or “if only we hadn’t lit that candle.” Accidents happen, but many burns can be prevented by keeping a few easy tips in mind …Continue reading →
Even though we’ve had a warmer than usual winter, this time of year I still love the idea of curling up in front of a fireplace with a book and a hot cup of cocoa. But cold weather also brings a higher risk for fires and burns.
We were lucky to have some special visitors to the hospital from the Greenfield and Waukesha fire departments to teach kids about fire safety and how to prevent burns. They shared some great steps that all families can take to keep themselves …Continue reading →
Do you like pizza? Do you like fire trucks? If you answered yes, your family should participate in Delivering Fire Prevention.
It’s happening Thursday evening, Oct. 20, in communities across southeast Wisconsin. If you order a pizza for delivery and have children age 14 and younger, you may be chosen to have your community’s fire department deliver your pizza – in a fire truck with lights flashing and horns blaring! …Continue reading this post
Summertime means lots of fun outdoor activities both during the day as well as at night. Whether it’s outdoor cooking or telling a story around the fire pit, both pose potential injury risk, especially for children. Kids love toasted marshmallows, but adults should be the ones to toast them. Remember marshmallows get hot and can burn.
The summer months are a time when families enjoy a variety of activities outdoors; however, it’s also when fireworks cause devastating residential fires and serious injuries to children. According to the United States Fire Administration, fireworks injure nearly 9,000 people annually. Children younger than 15 years old account for 39 percent of the estimated fireworks injuries, which include serious burns. In 2009, 67 percent of fireworks injuries occurred between June 19 and July 19.
The National Fire Protection Agency reports that sparklers, which typically are viewed by parents as relatively harmless fireworks for children, cause serious burn injuries, accounting for one-third of the injuries to children age 5 and younger.
Safe Kids USA urges parents to practice these safety tips recommended by the United States Fire administration to reduce the risk of a residential fire or a trip to the emergency room and ensure this summer is a safe one for your family.
- The best way to enjoy fireworks is to visit public fireworks displays hosted by professionals who know how to safely handle fireworks.
- If you plan to use fireworks, make sure they are legal in your area.
- Never light fireworks indoors or near dry grass.
- Always have a bucket of water and/or a fire extinguisher nearby. Know how to operate the fire extinguisher properly.
- Do not wear loose clothing while using fireworks.
- Stand several feet away from lit fireworks. If a device does not go off, do not stand over it to investigate it. Put it out with water and dispose of it.
- Closely supervise children around fireworks at all times.
For more information about summer fire safety, visit www.safekids.org.
~ Lisa Klindt Simpson, coordinator, Safe Kids Southeast Wisconsin
Brrrr—it’s cold out there. Or at least it is here. It’s February in Wisconsin, and we expect this weather. We try lots of different things to stay warm, but often we don’t realize these things could cause serious burns. This is national Burn Awareness Week and as a nurse with Children’s Hospital’s burn program, I’d like share a few burn prevention tips to help keep you and your family safe this winter: …Continue reading →
During the cold, snowy Wisconsin winter nights, I like to enjoy a cozy fire in our fireplace, sip hot cocoa and bundle up in a warm sweater. Sadly, winter also means a higher risk of home fires.
Did you know that over half of home fires happen late at night when people are sleeping? A nighttime house fire can be devastating, but knowing a few facts may protect your family if you wake up in the middle of the night and smell smoke.
Kids sleep more deeply than adults, and that may make it more difficult to wake them during an emergency. I recently read a study that said young children often sleep through …Continue reading →
Holidays just aren’t the same without the traditional decorations. As you decorate your home and spend time with family and friends, please be aware of potential dangers from holiday decorations that could lead to fires and injuries.
- If you buy an artificial tree, make sure it’s fire resistant. It doesn’t mean the tree won’t …Continue reading →
We’ve had some beautiful fall days lately and of course, living in Wisconsin, we’re never sure how many more of those we’ll get before the snow falls. These days are a popular time for bonfires and leaf burning, and in some communities they are very commonplace. They also can be dangerous to your child’s health.
Burning wood and other yard waste releases harmful particles into the air. These particles are too tiny to see, but they have the ability to travel into the deepest parts of your lungs. Just like cigarette smoke, the smoke from wood and leaves can cause irritation to the lungs, eyes, nose and throat.
Your kids may complain of chest tightness, coughing, wheezing, shortness of breath, burning eyes, a runny nose or sore throat. These symptoms can last for days after exposure to the smoke. If a child has asthma, symptoms may get worse, and he or she may even have an asthma attack. Children and individuals with underlying medical problems like asthma and allergies are the first to feel the effects of smoke, and are at the greatest risk for problems.
Here’s what you can do to protect your child’s health:
- Avoid or minimize exposure to bonfires and leaf burning. If your child can’t stay indoors, protect him or her with a mask or a scarf over the nose and mouth.
- If your child has asthma, make sure you have his or her rescue medications, usually an inhaler, readily available.
- If your child has an underlying medical condition make sure he or she is taking the medications as prescribed by your doctor.
- If your child has been exposed to smoke and is having trouble breathing, seek medical care immediately.
If you are burning to dispose of yard waste, please consider checking into alternate methods of yard waste disposal like mulching.
And, as always, take proper safety precautions to prevent burns.
–Lauren Donovan, MD, fellow, Pulmonary Clinic, Children’s Hospital of Wisconsin