When her baby daughter Bea tipped a hot cup of coffee on herself, Jo Ruston knew exactly what to do, having learned about burns during her Mini First Aid class. Due to Jo’s speedy actions, Bea will not need a skin graft and will instead be left with a small scar.

We spoke to Jo on the very day when Bea had her final dressing removed:


How did little Bea burn herself?

My six month old daughter, Bea got a little too curious about Daddy’s hot cup of coffee which he had left on the table, thinking it was out of reach. He literally turned his back for a second and Bea went straight to try and grab the cup. Scalding hot coffee went down her chin, all over her chest and all the way down just below her belly button.


Oh my goodness, Bea (and Daddy) must have had quite a shock.

I was in the other room and could hear her crying but I knew it was not her normal cry. It didn’t sound right at all. I went in and her Daddy told me she had hot coffee on her. My gut instinct, simply from doing the Mini First Aid class, was to get Bea’s vest off and get her under cold water straightaway. It was crazy how the knowledge just kicked in.


It must have been so hard keeping Bea under cold water.

Absolutely. Bea was beside herself and didn’t want to be kept under the water at all but I knew we had to keep her there for at least 20 minutes. That is the most crucial bit to stop the skin from continuing to burn.


Were you panicking at the time?

I tried to stay calm to help Bea remain calm but my adrenalin was going through the roof.


Thank goodness you knew exactly what to do.

I cannot imagine what would have happened if I had not done the Mini First Aid class. I describe it now as the BEST investment I have ever made.


What a great way to put it . .

It costs £20 for 2 hours of your life. People spend hundreds of pounds on fancy buggies but none of that matters more than keeping your child safe and knowing what to do in an emergency.


Jo and Bea getting treated at hospital


And how about your partner? He must have felt awful.

There were certainly some tears, especially as he couldn’t go with us in the ambulance due to Covid. He had to stay at home and I can’t imagine what must have been going through his head. He’s just so happy now that Bea is going to be fine.


Is there any other advice you would like to give to parents?

Please please please learn first aid. I am so thankful I knew what to do. I dread to think what could have happened had I not done the class. Accidents happen as children are naturally curious. It’s about being prepared for that.


And how is Bea now?

Bea has had to go to hospital to have her dressings changed. Today is really special as she has had her final dressing removed. It still looks red and she will have a small scar but we’re incredibly lucky. Thankfully Bea won’t need to have a skin graft. She will have to stay out of the sun and keep covered up for the next 2 years as any exposure can cause permanent damage. It has been a difficult time but we’re so thankful that Bea is going to fine.


Knowing how to do deal with burns is an essential part of our Mini First Aid classes. Using your first aid knowledge and acting quickly can make all the difference.



If you would like to sign up for a Baby & Child Mini First Aid class in your area, please CLICK HERE


Please note that all Mini First Aid classes in England adhere to current First Aid Industry Body and Public Health England guidelines.