Prevent Facial Injuries and Practice Firework Safety This July 4th Holiday

Independence Day, July 4th, is around the corner, and fireworks are often a big part of the celebration.

And while fun and festive, fireworks can also be dangerous. In fact, 250 people go to the emergency room every day with fireworks-related injuries in the month around the July 4th holiday, according to Consumer Product Safety Commission 2017 Fireworks Annual Report. And more than three quarters of these injuries occur in the head, neck or upper extremities.

Facial plastic surgeons treat more than their fair share of individuals who have been injured by fireworks, and these facial trauma surgeries and burn repairs are often extensive and can leave lasting damage, but they are 100 percent preventable. According to the American Academy of Facial Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery (AAFPRS) annual survey, facial plastic surgeons report that the fourth top reconstructive facial plastic surgery performed last year was for Facial Trauma.

“Every year around the July 4th holiday, emergency rooms see an uptick on facial trauma injuries due to firework injuries which could include severe burns, lacerations, visual impairment and hearing loss,” says William H. Truswell, facial plastic surgeon and president of the AAFPRS. “Facial plastic and reconstructive surgeons are trained to treat patients who require post-traumatic reconstruction procedures due to summer-related accidents like firework injuries. Facial reconstructive surgery is complex so we always advise patients to ‘trust your face to a facial plastic surgeon’.”

If you plan on watching or using fireworks, follow these safety tips:

  • Keep children away from fireworks.
  • Never try to re-light or pick up fireworks that have not ignited fully.
  • Keep a bucket of water or a garden hose handy in case of fire or other mishap.
  • Light fireworks one at a time, then move back quickly.

For more information or to be connected with a member of the AAFPRS about facial plastic or reconstructive surgery, please contact

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The American Academy of Facial Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery is the world’s largest specialty association for facial plastic surgery.  It represents more than 2,500 facial plastic and reconstructive surgeons throughout the world.