AUSTIN (KXAN) — Children can be very curious and desire to imitate whatever their guardians do. An emergency pediatric doctor gave KXAN some tips on how to safely let kids learn and help in the kitchen on Thanksgiving.

Dr. Sivasankar, an emergency pediatric medicine physician at St. David’s Children’s Hospital, gave us some insight.

What are the most common injuries you’re seeing this holiday season?

Dr. Sivasankar: We do see a lot of kitchen-related accidents. We see some burns. Thanksgiving is the time when families get together, they’re playing basketball, playing football outside, weather-providing, and we see a lot of those types of injuries around the holiday season.

What do parents need to know in order to keep their kids safe, especially if their child wants to go in the kitchen and be helpful and cook something?

Dr. Sivasankar: We always want our little helpers around. We want to encourage them to be in the kitchen, but we want to do it safely. I think the big thing that we want to do is make sure that someone always has eyes on the child and making sure they’re doing age-appropriate tasks. And then correctly teaching them how to use utensils. Making sure that if we’re having things on the stove, that we’re turning those pot handles towards the back of the burner, so they’re not reaching up and grabbing something too hot. One of the most common things that we see are burns, and these can be from burns that are from pots that are on the stovetop, but it could also be hot items that are left on the countertop and on the table, including hot teas, coffees, those kinds of things. So really being careful of where their hands are, and making sure they’re not reaching up and grabbing things. That’s really important.

If an injury does occur how do parents treat that? And when do they know when to take their child to the hospital?

Dr. Sivasankar: First of all, if there’s any sort of burn or injury to the face, or to the hands, we definitely want to see them in the emergency department that night. The sooner the better. Otherwise, if it’s in other parts of the body, what you can usually do is give your pediatrician’s office a call, and their on-call nurse is even on during Thanksgiving. And they can advise you a little bit on some home remedies and things that we can try at home to kind of help that burn until they really need to be seen in the emergency room. And if they do, they’ll let you know at that time.

We’ve reported on the flu and RSV, is that what you’re seeing mostly this month?

Dr. Sivasankar: Primarily, we’re seeing a whole bunch of upper respiratory tract infections, and of course, those under the age of two are the most vulnerable. We’re encouraging everyone to not forget things like hand hygiene, which is really important in the holidays. If you’re sick stay home so we’re not getting other immunocompromised or vulnerable populations sick. And then, of course, you know, getting those flu shots, COVID boosters, and things like that.