This Diwali, a 24-hour helpline for burn injuries


To reach out and help during such mishaps, a helpline number will be launched next week which will be functional until after the festival is over.
 
To be launched by Delhi-based plastic surgeon Anup Dhir, the helpline 09312377554, will put one through to the doctor himself.

"Ninety-five percent of burns are accidental. And 80 percent of burn victims are women and children because these accidents often happen at home. With a little care therefore these accidents can be avoided," Dhir, a senior consultant of plastic surgery at Apollo hospital, said.

Further, when the injuries are on the face, hands or arms, 40 percent of the burns are on children below the age of 14.

"Lighting a fire cracker may seem very easy and fun but if one is not careful it can cause serious damage. One should never attempt to re-light a dud because it can go off. You should douse it with water instead," Dhir advised.

One should not carry fire crackers in their pockets because they are explosives and may go off prematurely even without being lit, he added.

"Also most of us ignore the instructions on firecracker packets. This may be a no-brainer, but can help you prevent a mistake nonetheless," Dhir said.

Debunking misconceptions on certain traditional first aid given to burn injuries, Dhir said: "You should hold the burn area under running water which is cool, not cold and not use ice since that will take the wound longer to heal. Also one shouldn't use ghee on the burn area as it increases the risk of infection."

The 24-hours helpline will start functioning Oct 13 and will be operational for eight days. Diwali will be celebrated Oct 17.

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