Burns in the baby


Burns are one of the most painful injuries and affect all age groups. In babies, common causes are bath water that is too warm, food and hot water bottles that are too warm. Depending on the severity, burns show up as reddened skin, blistering or even open wounds. The treatment also depends on the severity and ranges from skin creams to transplants in a special clinic.


The therapy depends on the severity and area of ​​the burn. Often no specific therapy is necessary for slight reddening. A cooling ointment can be used to relieve pain and skin care creams can prevent the burned skin from drying out. Further damage to the skin should be avoided, which is why good sun protection is particularly important.

In the case of more severe burns, the wound must be examined by a doctor and bandaged in a sterile manner, otherwise infections can occur. For larger areas, treatment must be carried out by the emergency doctor and later by a burn intensive care unit for children.

First, fluid therapy and pain management are necessary. The wounds are bandaged sterile with BurnKits to prevent sticking. Antibiotics are also usually given to prevent infections. In some cases a skin graft with split skin is necessary. To do this, a thin layer of healthy skin is removed and placed on the burn wound, where it grows. Even after discharge, special compression shirts and thorough skin care are necessary, as otherwise the scars can lead to severe restrictions. This is particularly dangerous with babies, as the children are still growing rapidly.

Read more on this topic at: Skin graft


Aloe vera ointments and cooling gels such as Fenistil are suitable for cooling and relieving pain in light burns. These are the same ointments that are used for sunburns and are available over the counter in pharmacies and drug stores. Perfume-based ointments should be avoided, as these can additionally damage the skin. Later, the skin can be soothed and protected against dehydration with normal skin care creams. In the case of severe burns, creams should not be used, but medical help should be sought directly.


For minor burns, the therapy can be homeopathic and no medical care is necessary. In any case, however, a clarification should be carried out by the pediatrician, who can assess the severity of the burn. Homeopathic treatment is not sufficient for more severe burns. Remedies recommended by homeopaths include Calendula, Arsenicum album, Cantharis, and Causticum. The remedies should work against the inflammation and relieve pain.

Read more on this topic at: Homeopathy for burns

Concomitant symptoms

The main symptom besides the skin changes is severe pain. However, since infants cannot specifically express their complaints, this is only indicated by continuous crying. Burns in the mouth also lead to drinking weakness, as further sucking increases the pain. If the pain is severe, you may lose consciousness.

Larger burns lead to a loss of fluid, which must be compensated for by volume therapy. This therapy is already initiated by the emergency doctor, otherwise the babies can slide into shock and this can lead to cardiovascular failure.

Large wounds not only cause a loss of fluid, but also represent a gateway for dangerous germs. In the case of open burns, bacteria can prevent the wound from healing.

Another danger with large-scale burns is hypothermia, as the skin normally provides insulation and is missing in the area of ​​the wound. In addition, it is still a reflex of the parents to cool the children with cold water, which is more harmful than helpful.


The causes of burns are numerous and depend heavily on the age of the person affected. Infants are not yet able to specifically express that the bath water or milk is too hot, or that the hot water bottle has been lying on their stomach for too long. In addition, they cannot free themselves from the situation.

For children who can already pull themselves up, hot coffee or the iron are also possible causes. In addition to accidents, child abuse must unfortunately always be considered. This is a cruel situation for concerned parents, but it is there to protect a few children.

Cherry stone pillow / hot water bottle

One of the oldest home remedies is probably the cherry stone pillow. Warmth is a great help with stomach cramps and other illnesses. So it's understandable that parents want to help their babies with stomach cramps and put a cherry stone pillow or a hot water bottle on their stomach. It is known that these must not be too hot, as this causes burns, but a warm and not hot hot water bottle is also a cause of burns if used too long. The infants are not yet able to specifically show that the hot water bottle is too warm and cannot remove it themselves.


The diagnosis is mostly purely clinical. The diagnosis of burns can easily be made from the story of the parents and the complexion. The skin is reddened with a first-degree burn and painful to the touch. A more severe burn also leads to classic blistering. Older, severe burns show up as extensive scars. Oral burns caused by hot food are more difficult to diagnose.

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A slight burn usually heals completely within a few days. More severe burns are often associated with a long hospital stay and require further treatment later. The exact healing time cannot be predicted. The healing depends on many individual factors. The area, severity and location of the burn are important here. The age of the child, possible previous illnesses and the time at which treatment begins are also decisive for the healing process.