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Burn injuries range in severity and damage and may cause serious discomfort, pain, or scarring. Some burn injuries may require extensive medical treatment and care. Fortunately, many burn injuries are preventable if you follow your area’s given safety guidelines.
CAN I SEEK COMPENSATION FOR MY BURN INJURY IN NEW MEXICO?
Depending on the specifics of your burn accident and injury, you may be able to seek legal recourse for your damages. A burn injury attorney may be able to help you assess the facts and determine the best legal avenue for your case.
Burn injury victims can seek many different types of damages. New Mexico courts award damages for a variety of reasons, including the severity of your injuries, the contributing actions of the liable party, and the nature of the incident itself. Victims may be able to secure damages for medical expenses, pain and suffering, lost wages, emotional trauma, or even punitive damages.
New Mexico has a law that limits the time you have to file a complaint after an accident. In New Mexico, plaintiffs typically have three years from the date of the accident to file the personal injury case in court. If you do not file your case within that timeframe, you may lose your chance to file altogether. If you have been injured in a burn accident, it may be beneficial to retain a personal injury attorney who can help you meet deadlines, assess your options, and seek the highest compensation possible.
Degrees of burn injuries
Typically, a burn injury kills or severely damages skin cells. These injuries are usually categorized based on the severity and depth of the injury. There are many factors that contribute to the classification of a burn injury. According to the Mayo Clinic, there are typically four classifications of burn injuries:
First-degree burns typically only affect the outer layer of skin. These burns may cause redness or sensitivity. Sunburns are a common example of first-degree burns. Luckily, long-term damage is rare for first-degree burns.
Second-degree burns damage the outer layer of skin and the dermis directly beneath it. These burns may cause swelling and splotchy skin. Blisters are also common in second-degree burn cases. Pain may be severe. Depending on the depth of your injuries, scarring may occur.
Third-degree burns reach the fatty layer beneath the first two layers of skin. Damaged areas may turn black, brown, or white. Skin may appear leathery. Third-degree burns can damage nerve-endings, causing extreme pain or numbness.
Fourth-degree burns are the deepest and most severe. These burns damage and/or destroy every layer of skin because they reach your bones, muscles, and tendons. Fourth-degree burns can be life-threatening. Victims should seek medical attention immediately after an injury.
Depending on the specifics of your accident, it may take a day or two for the symptoms of your burn injury to develop. Burns of all types can lead to medical complications. According to the Cleveland Clinic, complications may include infection, dehydration, scarring, edema, organ failure, hypotension, sepsis, or even death. Left untreated, burn injuries may be more susceptible to these complications. If you have sustained a burn injury in New Mexico, it may be best to visit a local medical professional for an evaluation of your injuries. A licensed physician may be able to help you treat your symptoms and prevent subsequent complications.
Causes of burn injuries
Burn injuries are some of the most painful and complicated injuries. These injuries can affect a victim’s nerves, muscles, bones, and blood vessels. There are many different causes of burn injuries. Your injuries may vary depending on the specific cause of your incident. Common causes of burn injuries include, but are not limited to, the following:
- Sun exposure
- Hot liquid or steam
- Hot metal or glass
- Inhalation of toxic gas
- Cosmetic products
Burn injury victims may suffer from extreme discomfort and pain. Due to the seriousness of burn injuries, it is imperative that you know the common causes of such injuries to avoid falling victim to a burn accident. While the aforementioned list is not exhaustive, it may help you and your loved ones stay away from volatile situations. If you or a family member has sustained a burn injury in New Mexico, it may be beneficial to contact a burn injury lawyer to evaluate the legal aspects of your accident. Depending on your claim, you may be entitled to legal compensation for your injuries, expenses, or damages.
Treatment of burn injuries
If you have been injured in a burn accident, it is essential that you visit a healthcare professional as soon as possible. Upon arrival, the attending physician will likely assess the severity of your burns by examining your skin. If your burns are particularly deep or widespread, a doctor may transfer you to a burn center that specializes in burn treatment and care. Some doctors may order additional tests or diagnostic procedures.
Luckily, most minor burns can be treated at home with basic first aid supplies. For serious burns, treatment may involve medications, wound dressings, therapy, grafts, or surgery. Depending on the needs of your burns, your doctor may utilize different treatment plans to speed up the healing process. These treatment plans may include water-based treatments, pain medications, burn creams, antibiotics, tetanus shots, or hydration therapy.
Ultimately, while some burns may not require professional attention, many others do. Burn injuries can be debilitating for victims, especially if left untreated for a substantial amount of time. Thus, if you have sustained a burn injury, you should visit an emergency clinic as soon as possible. A medical professional may be able to make you more comfortable and treat your injuries simultaneously.
HOW CAN BURN INJURIES BE PREVENTED?
According to the American Burn Association, over 450,000 individuals are seen each year for the treatment of a burn injury in the United States and Canada. In 2014, there were 3,275 recorded deaths from fire and smoke inhalation injuries alone. Luckily, the majority of these injuries are preventable.
The American Burn Association releases new prevention resources every year, including guidelines and pamphlets designed to prevent burn injuries. There are ten basic safety measures that families can take to reduce their chances of falling victim to a burn injury.
- Keep hot items out of the reach of children. Give hot household items time to cool before handling them.
- Tuck away cords and cover outlets. Check and discard electrical cords with exposed wires.
- Keep a safe distance of at least three feet from open flames.
- Draft a fire escape plan and practice it with your family.
- Keep a fire extinguisher in your home.
- Test smoke detectors at least once a month.
- Lock up matches and lighters.
- Wear gloves when handling chemicals.
- Wear sunscreen every day and avoid peak sunlight.
- Provide quality and timely maintenance for all home appliances.
Burn injuries can be devastating for victims and their loved ones. Following these guidelines may help prevent costly injuries and save lives. If you have sustained a burn injury and it is too late for prevention, you should contact a burn injury lawyer who can help you evaluate your potential damages and allocate liability accordingly.
GET HELP FROM ZINDA LAW GROUP
Burn injuries can cause substantial pain and discomfort. Many of these injuries may require extensive medical treatment and care, which can burden victims financially and emotionally. Victims may be left with hefty debt and trauma as a result of their injuries. Burn injury claims can require substantial legal analysis and research, depending on the complexity of the case. If you or a loved one was injured in a New Mexico burn accident, you should contact a burn injury lawyer as soon as possible. An experienced personal injury attorney may be able to help you seek legal recourse, evaluate your claim’s merits, and negotiate a settlement for your injuries.
At Zinda Law Group, we have the knowledge and resources necessary to help you seek the highest compensation possible. Zinda Law Group may be able to provide you with personalized and quality consultation about the specifics of your legal claim. The sooner you contact our office, the better we may be able to serve you.
If you or a loved one has suffered from a burn injury, call Zinda Law Group at (800) 863-5312 for a free consultation with one of our New Mexico lawyers. You don’t owe us anything unless we win your case. That’s our No Win, No Fee Guarantee. Check out our blog for more resources.
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