April 10, 2024
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April 10, 2024
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Prevent Burns During Chanukah

(Courtesy of RWJ Barnabas Health) Holidays are times when people get together with family and friends. Unfortunately, the holiday season can also be a time for accidents and injuries. The Burn Center at Saint Barnabas Medical Center—New Jersey’s only burn center—has treated many people who’ve sustained significant burns due to house fires during the holidays as well as individuals who were burned while cooking and preparing food for the holidays.

Before lighting the Chanukah menorah and cooking latkes, it is important to take some precautions to prevent harm. Keep menorahs away from curtains or any object that can be blown in the direction of the flame. Lighted candles should never be left unattended and should be kept away from the reach of small children and pets. When making latkes, remember to turn the frying pan handles away from the edge of the stove, and keep all children away from the hot oil.

If young children are visiting during the holidays, extra precautions should be taken to ensure that the children are safe. Young children can easily be scalded from hot foods spilled down onto them by pulling a tablecloth, or grabbing something hot off of a tabletop or the kitchen counter, and can suffer serious injury from playing too near a stove.

In the event of a burn, it is important to immediately take the following steps:

Cool all burns with tepid to cool water, regardless of degree, and continue flushing the area for up to 10 minutes.

Do not apply ice, ointments, butter or other “home remedies.”

Remove all clothing or garments to reduce the contact time with the hot items.

Cover affected areas with a clean dry cloth, towel or blanket to protect the burn and minimize pain.

Seek medical attention if the burn is larger than the victim’s hand size, or if the victim is a child or an elderly person.

The following are additional safety tips from The Burn Center at Saint Barnabas Medical Center:

Keep lighters and matches away from young children.

Keep young children away from fireplaces and hot ovens.

Make sure the candles in the menorah have burned out before going to bed or leaving the house.

When buying extra batteries for new toys, don’t forget about the ones for your smoke detectors.

Saint Barnabas Medical Center in Livingston, New Jersey, provides Bikur Cholim accommodations for Shabbat and holidays; please contact Pastoral Care between the hours of 8:00 a.m. and 3:00 p.m. (973-322-5015) or ask your nurse for the nursing supervisor at any other time. For more information about The Burn Center at Saint Barnabas Medical Center, visit

Saint Barnabas Medical Center wishes you and your family a Happy Chanukah.

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