Keep all flammable substances-including lighter fluid, gasoline, kerosene, and especially matches and lighters-well hidden and out of your child's reach, preferably in a locked storage area.
Make sure that all heat-producing appliances are kept out of your child's reach and well away from potentially flammable items such as curtains or upholstery. This includes devices such as irons, toasters, and space heaters, as well as coffee-makers, curling irons, and halogen lamps-anything that generates heat when turned on. Always exercise special care when using such appliances if children are present. These devices should also be unplugged and their cords tucked away when not in use.
Avoid using extension cords, and keep all electrical cords out of the reach of small children. Babies who are teething, particularly ones whose molars are erupting, are always looking for things to bite on, and electrical cords can be tempting to them. Biting on the cord of anything that is plugged in can cause a serious burn at the comers of the mouth.
Children love to play with water. Sooner or later, your child will manage to turn on a faucet. Keep the temperature of your hot water heater set at no higher 120°F. It takes three minutes for 120°F water to cause a third-degree bum, long enough for you to hear your child scream and intervene. At 140°F, water can cause a third-degree burn in five seconds.
Teach your child the basic rules of fire safety (see margin inset).
For additional suggestions on ways to reduce your
child's risk of being burned, see Home Safety.
From Smart Medicine for a Healthier Child by Janet Zand, N.D., L.Ac., Robert Rountree, MD, Rachel Walton, RN, ©1994. Published by Avery Publishing, New York. For personal use only; neither the digital nor printed copy may be copied or sold. Reproduced by permission.