Home » 4 Ways You Can Burn Yourself, and How to Avoid Them

4 Ways You Can Burn Yourself, and How to Avoid Them

by Melissa Bell
4 minutes read

There are all kinds of ways to hurt yourself. If you work in a perilous industry, such as construction, the chances of severe injury or even death are higher. However, it’s also possible for you to hurt yourself if you don’t feel like you’re doing anything dangerous at that moment.

Of all the injury types, burns are some of the most painful. Doctors describe burns by degrees, with first-degree burns being the least serious and fourth-degree ones being the worst and most painful. Doctors will look at how deeply a burn penetrates the skin’s surface when determining how to categorize one.

While you can burn yourself in different scenarios, there are a few where it tends to happen often. We’ll mention those now, so you’ll know to be extra careful if you’re ever in one of these circumstances.

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How Big of a Problem Are Burns?

Before we get into ways to avoid burns, you should know there’s a significant number of people who suffer these sorts of mishaps every year. There’s an entity called the American Burn Association that tracks these injuries. They say that there are over 1 million burn injuries yearly, and about half of those require medical treatment.

Those stats should certainly get your attention. 3,500 of these injuries cause death every year, while another 500 come from car and plane crashes.

Electrical Accidents

Unless you are an electrician, you likely don’t think about electricity very much. We pretty much take it for granted these days, unless a lightbulb burns out and we need to replace it.

Electricity can provide you with a painful burn, though, if you are not careful. If you are going to change a lightbulb, make sure to wear heavy-duty gloves when you do so.

You should turn off the power at your home’s fuse box before you change a lightbulb. An electric shock hurts, but it can also cause a devastating burn in some instances.

Matches and Lighters

If you’re going to use matches or a lighter, you should know that these can often cause burns as well. Most parents tell their kids at some point that they should never play with matches or lighters, but fire fascinates some people, and pyromania can continue into adulthood in some cases.

Fire is beautiful and primal, which is why some people like the look and smell of it. If you’re going to use a lighter or some matches to start a grill or for some other purpose, though, make sure to concentrate on what you are doing. If you act carelessly, a match or lighter can burn you or start a fire that you cannot easily control.

Hot Water

If you love to cook, you likely know that hot water is a crucial factor in producing all sorts of tasty dishes. You can’t very well boil a pot of pasta for a scrumptious Italian meal without turning on the stove.

Once the water boils, it’s hot enough that it can take the skin off your entire hand if you’re foolish enough to stick it in. Even if you don’t put your hand in the water, though, the steam can scald you if you’re pouring that water and pasta into a colander once it’s ready.

Make sure to utilize a potholder or oven mitt when you pick up a pot or pan from the stove. You should also keep your face well back from the steam when you pour out the contents. Steam can cause third or even fourth-degree burns if your skin is right in its path.

Building Campfires

If you’re building a campfire, you might use a lighter, matches, or another method, such as a can of gasoline. Your campfire can certainly keep you warm when you’re out in the woods, or you might cook some food on it.

Building a campfire is another way that many people burn themselves, though. If you don’t have the fuel source structured and contained in such a way that it’s no danger to you, it can leap up suddenly and scorch your skin or catch your clothing on fire. At that point, you’ll need to quickly drop to the ground and roll back and forth to try and smother it or throw some water on your clothing if you have some nearby.

Respect fire, electricity, and liquids like water that can reach a boiling point. That way, you will never have to visit a burn ward.

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