Whether they’re suffered in a car accident, a building fire or some other way, burn injuries are among the most traumatic wounds that anybody can experience.
Beyond the initial pain and physical damage they cause, burn injuries can also have lasting consequences that continue to affect victims long after the initial event. These are just a few of the challenges burn victims can face.
Physical scars and disfigurement
One of the most apparent and lasting consequences of burn injuries is physical scarring and disfigurement. Severe burns can leave visible scars that may lead the victim to feel self-conscious, have social anxiety and lower their self-esteem. Their altered appearance can also be emotionally challenging, and victims may require ongoing mental health support to navigate the psychological impact of their changed appearance.
Functional limitations and disability
Burns on joints, such as the hands, elbows or knees, can restrict mobility and fine motor skills. Scarring on the face or neck can affect speech, swallowing and breathing. Living with disabilities resulting from burn injuries often requires adaptation and ongoing rehabilitation in order for victims to regain some measure of independence and a positive quality of life.
Chronic pain and sensory issues
Burn injuries don’t always stop hurting when they heal. Nerve damage resulting from burns can lead to neuropathic pain that becomes chronic. Scar tissue can also cause additional pain, as well as restricting movement. Additionally, survivors may experience either hypersensitivity or decreased sensitivity around their scars, and may need ongoing pain management to cope.
Social and occupational challenges
Burn injuries can have significant social and occupational implications for victims. The visible scars and disfigurement may lead to social isolation and difficulties in forming (and keeping) new relationships. Returning to work can be challenging due to physical limitations, discrimination or the need for accommodations.
If you’re a burn victim or your loved one has suffered severe burns, you know that the journey toward recovery has just begun. You have every right to expect fair compensation for both what you have lost already and what you’ll require in the future if your injurious circumstances were not your fault or were only partially your fault. Seek legal guidance for more information.