Burn Caused by Abuse
Most burns are accidental. But some burns may not be accidental. Intentional burns, such as immersion in a bathtub of hot water, can occur in abuse situations. Suspect physical abuse of a child or vulnerable adult when:
- Any injury cannot be explained or does not match the explanation.
- Repeated injuries occur.
- Explanations change for how the injury happened.
You may be able to prevent further abuse by reporting it.
- If you suspect child abuse, call your local child protective agency, police, or a health professional (such as a doctor, nurse, or counselor).
- If you suspect elder abuse, report it.
- If you or someone you know is a victim of domestic violence, seek help.
- If you have trouble controlling your anger with a child in your care, resources are available for help.
An intentional burn can also occur when a person burns himself or herself (self-inflicted burns). The person with a self-inflicted burn will need a mental health evaluation as well as medical treatment.
It is important to have intentional burns evaluated by a health professional.
Primary Medical ReviewerWilliam H. Blahd, Jr., MD, FACEP - Emergency Medicine
Specialist Medical ReviewerH. Michael O'Connor, MD - Emergency Medicine
Current as ofJune 4, 2014