Prevention is the best tool for avoiding child burn injuries. Unfortunately, the facts do not lie; these injuries are all too common. They can range from mild scalds to devastating, permanent injuries. While you can handle some mild burn injuries at home, many child burn injuries require hospitalization. Recovery can be a long, hard process that can take years.
As part of the recovery process, a child might need psychological treatment, re-building of their self-esteem, and physical therapy. It takes professionals to deliver these types of recovery for child burn injuries and the cost can be high enough to bankrupt many families. If someone is at fault for your child’s injury, you may be able to file a child burn injury claim for money to cover these costs.
Burn injuries are traumatic and extremely painful and can leave your child in fear of another similar injury. Your child may be afraid of suffering more pain, scared of treatment, and extremely anxious about what will happen next. Your child may have nightmares and have trouble going to sleep, staying asleep, or getting enough sleep.
If your child is in the hospital, doctors, nurses, therapists, and other strangers are all around them. Being in an unfamiliar place away from family and home can add to his anxiety and fear.
Your child may worry about when he will recover or if his burns and scars will heal. Depending on the injuries, your child may not be able to do everything he did before and may express this with anger or fear. Your child may also become depressed, withdrawn, or worry about other people’s reactions to how the burns look.
Your child might need treatment from a child psychologist or psychiatrist during recovery. This medical professional can help your child learn to manage all the new feelings he is having and offer coping methods to help with your child’s behavior. The main job of the psychiatrist and psychotherapist is to help your child realize he is capable and interesting and can live a wonderful life despite these injuries.
Family therapy is an important part of the process. It can help your family know what to do and say when your child acts out or starts exhibiting behaviors that differ from his pre-injury self. It can also give you tools to help you respond to others who may be insensitive or rude when they see your child’s burn scars.
Recovering and Managing Self-Esteem
If your child has burn scars, especially on easily visible places such as the face, hands, arms, or legs, he might struggle with self-esteem. This can get worse when he leaves the hospital. Your child may find people staring at him, whispering about him, or even making hurtful or insensitive comments about how he looks. You and your child may have no idea how to react or what to say. You will need help to find ways to cope and appropriate ways to respond.
Your child’s psychiatrist and psychotherapist can help you and your child deal with reactions from other people and learn how to cope. Part of the way they do this is to talk to you and your child about what may happen when other people see him. They can help you and your child plan how to respond and what to say. They can help your child define a new self-image.
This means helping your child realize there is more to a person than physical looks. Your child can learn people have other qualities besides how they look that make them valued and loved. Your child can develop a new life, a new body image, and new ways to feel good about himself.
Your family can also learn their own coping techniques.
Physical therapy for children with burn injuries can start the day of the injury and last for several years. Physical therapy works to improve how the burned area moves and works and to do everything possible to prevent and reduce scars. Usually, with burn injuries, the therapy begins right away. It may include:
- Positioning, splinting, and exercise to:
- Reduce swelling
- Keep ability to move in all directions (range of motion)
- Prevent contractures (scars) or joint stiffness
- Prevent muscle shortness
- Having your child exercise or moving his limbs for him to keep him mobile and prevent swelling
- Braces or other supports to help with alignment
- Massage to reduce swelling and skin oversensitivity
- Play therapy to help with:
- Anxiety, depression, and other issues
- Physical and emotional recovery
What kind of therapy your child gets, how often, and for how long depends on his injuries and how they respond.
Burns in children are different from burns in adults. Children have more sensitive skin that is less resistant to heat. In some cases, burns may be more severe because they could not get away from the object burning them. Burns in children can cause severe contractures that can cause deformities if they do not receive timely medical treatment. For all these reasons, a physical therapy routine for your child involves the entire team of medical professionals involved in your child’s care.
Call Jason R. Schultz at 404-474-0804 To Discuss Your Child’s Burn Injury
Recovery from burn injuries is slow and can take years of treatment and rehabilitation. This treatment can affect every aspect of your life and cost thousands. If your child’s burn injury stemmed from another party’s negligence, you might consider filing a personal injury claim. Discuss your case with the Law Office of Jason R. Schultz, P.C. today: 404-474-0804.