Over 600 children under the age of five present to hospital every year with a burn injury. More than half (57%) of these burns occur in the kitchen. Other common causes of burns outside of the kitchen include heaters, irons, treadmills, BBQs and car exhausts.
Children’s skin burns deeper, quicker and at lower temperatures compared to adults. Burns from scalds cause lifelong problems for many children. Families suffer guilt and blame, while children usually deal with scarring that leads to body image and self-esteem problems.
Soups, noodles, tea and coffee are among the most common causes of scalds for children under the age of five and can take less than a second to cause a serious burn.
For more information on posters that were developed for schools aimed at preventing burn injuries in the school environment, please visit the burns resources for schools page.
Kids Health coordinated a pilot burns and scalds prevention project with Early Childhood Education and Care (ECEC) services in the Blacktown LGA for children under the age of five with a specific focus on the kitchen. The final report (May 2016) on this project is available in the downloads section below.
A brochure, poster and first aid for burns magnet is available in the downloads section below and free printed copies can be ordered through our online order form.
In 2018, Kids Health will be coordinating a second pilot of the Learn to Stop Burns and Scalds in the Kitchen project with ECEC services in the Cumberland LGA and Central Coast LGA. There is potential for expansion of the project across NSW after evaluation of this pilot is completed.
The Learn to Stop Burns! Program involves an interactive burns prevention game aimed at primary school aged children. It has been produced by Kids Health in collaboration with the Burns Unit at the Children's Hospital at Westmead, Kidsafe NSW and the NSW Severe Burn Injury Service.
The game allows entry to a virtual home where each room can be navigated to search for the potential burn dangers in everyday life. When the user clicks on the animations in the bathroom, kitchen, lounge room and backyard, they are given information on how to prevent this burn from happening. There is a quiz at the end to test the users knowledge! This game can be completed by children themselves or as a class facilitated by their teacher.
Click here to play Learn to Stop Burns! Online.
Click here to order a copy of the Learn to Stop Burns! Program on CD.
A teaching resource was developed to complement the Learn to Stop Burns! program, containing suggested teaching and learning activities. The activities allow students to work towards achieving the Stage Two and Stage Three outcomes in the Safe Living category of the K-6 Syllabus Personal Development, Health and Physical Education (PDHPE).
In 2008, Kids Health piloted the program with 89 students in NSW (aged between 8-12 years), and found an 18% increase in burns prevention knowledge. Teachers reported that it was "a great unit" and the "interactive nature of the program was excellent. Plenty of suggested support resources for teachers which provided background knowledge before teaching." This pilot was kindly funded by the Greater Metropolitan Clinical Taskforce (GMCT).
The Learn to Stop Burns! Teachers Resource is available in the downloads section below.
Click here to order a copy of Learn to Stop Burns! on CD.