19/10/2015 08:37 BST | Updated 17/10/2016 06:12 BST

National Burns Awareness Day: Raising Awareness To Save Lives


Some people can't resist the strong taste of coffee in the morning or the tender smell of a Yankee candle in the evening. We all come into contact with hot substances on a daily basis. However, it is estimated that over 121,000 people are seen by burns services and emergency departments each year.

While thousands of burns occur day in, day out, increased awareness of the dangers can prevent these traumatic incidents.

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The 21st October marks The British Burns Association's second National Burns Awareness Day. The day is set to educate others about the prevention of burn scars, as the majority of burn injuries are preventable. The Children's Burns Trust says that it aims to 'grow the momentum and reach an even wider audience' this year.

On average 110 children per day are seen in emergency departments - 82 as a result of a hot cup of tea or coffee spill:

"Across the board (children and adults), scald burns are the most common cause of burn injury, representing 43% of acute burn injuries which includes spills and scalds from hot water systems," said Alison Tweddle, Operations Manager at CBT

Research has also shown that the majority of injuries occurring to children are between 3 pm and 6 pm. For adults, it's more evenly spread during the day, but still with a higher incidence in the late afternoon.

National Burns Awareness Day not only aims to raise awareness of the prevention of burn injuries but for burn survivors to come together as a unit. Burn survivors took to Facebook this week and posted what the day means to them:


"It's a mind opening day, for the naive and cautious. For us as survivors, it's a day to embrace who we are, to be proud of what we have and can achieve," said Raiche Medrick, a house fire survivor.

The Katie Piper Foundation, Dans Fund, and other charities offer support and advice all year round:

"If you are a burns survivor, no matter your age or the size of your burns, and you need some help either financially, emotionally or physically, then please get in touch with us." - Dan's Fund


1) Cool the burn with running cold tap water for 20 minutes and remove all clothing and jewelry (unless it is melted or firmly stuck to the wound).

2) Call for help - 999, 111 or local GP for advice.

3) Cover with cling film or a sterile, non-fluffy dressing or cloth. Make sure the patient is kept warm.

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