Hot drinks 'behind many' child burns

Careless parents are leaving mugs of tea and coffee in reach of inquisitive children which is leading to many infants scalding themselves, research suggests.

Hot drinks are leading to many infants scalding themselves. Credit: Paul Seheult/Eye Ubiquitous

A study, published in the Archives of Diseases in Childhood, examined the burns and scalds of children admitted to five emergency departments, a burns assessment unit and three burns units across the UK.

Researchers found that of 1,215 children almost three in five suffered from scalds, 32% had contact burns and the rest were caused by burns from other causes, which included sunburns.

Children aged under one sustain 10 times as many burns and scalds as other children, the study said.

In children under five, 55% of scalds were caused by a hot drink in a mug or cup. Almost half of these (48%) were caused when youngsters pulled the drink on to themselves, causing burns to their faces, arms and upper torsos.