10,000 US Children Visit ER Every Year Due To Burns From Hot Soup


An alarming number of children are being sent to the emergency rooms across the United States due to burns from instant soup and noodles.

The researchers revealed that nearly 10,000 children ages 4 to 12 years have received burns each year. The culprit is the microwavable prepackaged food.

Their findings will be presented at the American Academy of Pediatrics 2018 National Conference & Exhibition in Orlando, Florida on Monday, Nov. 5.

Instant Soups Hurting Children

"Scald burns are a major cause of preventable injury among children, and our research found that instant soup spills are responsible for a large number of these painful burns," explained Courtney Allen, a pediatric emergency fellow at the Emory University.

The researchers based their findings on the data from the National Electronic Injury Surveillance System from 2006 to 2016. They identified which pediatric patients came in with scald burns caused either by microwavable instant soups, instant noodle soups, or hot water for making instant soups.

From the data, they found that around 9,500 children get scald burns from instant soups and noodles every year. Moreover, about 57 percent of children who received scald burns were female.

In addition, the researchers also found that the most common area of the body that received scald burns was the child's torso that accounted to 40 percent of the injuries. Patients also received burns on their faces, arms, and legs.

Dangers Of Instant Noodles And Soups

Dr. Allen warned that while prepackaged instant noodles and soups seem safe to make, they are still dangerous especially around children. When heated up via microwave or with hot water, instant food can injure children when not careful. Parents are advised to supervise children when heating up instant noodles and soups.

The researchers also hope that the study will encourage the food industry to develop packaging that can prevent injuries.

The St. Louis Children's Hospital has issued a guideline on what to do if a child gets burned from the hot liquid. The first thing to do is to immediately pour cold water over the injured area for 10 minutes. Most burns do not require a visit to the hospital but for serious cases, cover the injury with a sterile dressing or clean washcloth.

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