March 18, 2010

Home Remedies For Hot Water Scalding

Posted in Category : Natural Cures

Scalding caused from hot water or drinking hot beverages is very common and can be treated is not so much of a health concern. However, sometimes the burns can be very bad causing scars and blisters on the body. According to medical reports, about 112,000 people are treated ever year for burns caused by hot water scalding.

Hot water scalding results in peeling or splitting of skin and can cause blisters. The healing process of scald burns is very slow, and the chances of a scar formation are higher. However, quick and effective response can lessen the injury and accelerate healing.

Causes: According to the Department of Community Health, State of Michigan, tap water scald burns are the second most common cause of burn injuries across all age groups. Most scald burns are due to home water heaters at temperatures over 1200F.  The elderly are at high risk of scald injuries since their skin is sensitive and thinner than others. The thin skin results in deeper burns causing more harm than usual. Most scald injuries involving children are caused by accidental falls into hot bath water and mishaps with cookers, kettles, irons, heaters and fires.

Treatment: The first degree scald burns can be treated at home. However, in case of more serious burn injuries, medical supervision is extremely important. The treatment methods for hot water scalding are as given below.

Running cool water over the burn calms the pain and reduces the burning in case of first degree burns. A first degree burn disturbs only the outer layer of the skin and does not cause blisters. The wound should be left uncovered and dry. Mild pain relaxants like aspirin will help lessen the pain.

Second degree burns lead to oozing blisters. The dermis, which is the second layer of the skin, is damaged by the second degree injury. Second degree burns are mostly severe and require medical attention. Any hurried attempt to remove the stuck clothing should be avoided. Cool water should be poured on the wound for 5 to 10 minutes and medical care should be provided to the victim as soon as possible.

Severe second degree burns are treated with antibiotics and anti-inflammatory medication. Debridement, surgery or skin graft may be undertaken to heal the wound and to prevent scarring.
Third degree burns damages nerve endings and causes charring of the skin. The victim should be immediately shifted to the hospital. If the victim is unable to breathe or loses consciousness, emergency services should be provided immediately.

Home Remedies: Here are a few home remedies that will help deal with burn injuries successfully:

  • Douse the flames with water or with a blanket. (Avoid the use of water if the electric board/circuit is on fire)
  • Twirl the victim on the ground to extinguish the flames.
  • Take off the clothes from the unaffected part of the body; however, do not try to remove the clothing that is clung to the skin as it may cause severe damage.
  • Remove the source of heat or fire.
  • In case of electrical burns, isolate the victim from the source or switch off the electricity.
  • Do not try to reach the person linked to high voltage electrical source.
  • Cool the affected area with running water for at least 20 minutes.
  • Take off and metal objects from the body of the victim.
  • Pain relievers such as ibuprofen or paracetamol could be used to reduce the pain.


  • Avoid changing preset thermostats. The temperature for water heaters is preset at 1200F in many states.
  • Check the heater temperature before moving into a new apartment or home.
  • Keep the children away from ovens, irons and washing machines.
  • Avoid drinking hot beverages with a baby in the lap.
  • Pour the cold water in the bath tub ahead of the hot water to avoid bath water burns.
  • Avoid setting the thermostat too high.
  • Microwave heating of the milk may cause uneven heating. Check the microwave food properly before feeding the baby.
  • Teach slightly older children basic kitchen appliance safety measures.