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Prevent Electrical Burns in Young Children


Electrical burns are caused by contact with electrical sources or by lightning. Electrical current passing through a person's body may injure blood vessels, nerves, and muscles. Also, the throat and lungs can swell rapidly and severely, making breathing hard. The current can also damage the heart.

Protect your child around your home by using the following safety measures:

  • Place plug covers on all outlets.
  • Unplug all electrical items in your child's reach.
  • Use extra caution when using electrical items in areas where water sources are nearby, such as using a hair dryer in the bathroom.
  • Do not let your child play with toys that must be plugged into an electrical outlet.
  • Take your child indoors and close all windows and doors during an electrical storm.
  • Do not overload electrical outlets by using too many extension cords or electrical receptacle multipliers.
  • Replace electrical equipment and appliances that show signs of wear, such as having frayed or loose wires.


By Healthwise Staff
Primary Medical Reviewer Susan C. Kim, MD - Pediatrics
Specialist Medical Reviewer Thomas Emmett Francoeur, MDCM, CSPQ, FRCPC - Pediatrics
Last Revised November 30, 2010

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