Ensure the health and safety of your hands.
Our surgeons are here to help improve your quality of life by restoring your hand or wrist function and helping you prevent future injuries. Many common recreational activities carry hidden risks for injury. The following are recommended safety steps to help you prevent hand-related injuries and maintain your good health.
Most firework-related injuries are caused by handheld sparklers, with the majority of these injuries happening to children under the age of 5, according to the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission
. Fireworks should be used by adults only. Also, never pick up firework debris immediately after the display. The debris may still be hot or “live” and could still explode.
With gardening being a relaxing pastime, it’s easy to forget about the possible hazards that lie under the soil. Wearing gloves will help protect your hands from harmful pesticides, fertilizers and bacteria, as well as broken glass or other sharp objects that may be hidden in the soil.
Kitchen & knife safety
From pumpkins to turkeys, holidays bring plenty of opportunity for carving—and plenty of chances for hand injuries. Whether it’s a holiday ham you’re carving or simply cleaning up after an everyday meal, keeping your knife handles and cutting surfaces dry will help prevent your hands and food from slipping. Also, always remember to cut away from yourself and work in a well-lit area.
Lawnmower & snow blower safety
Although most people might think of a foot injury happening from a lawnmower or snow blower, hand and wrist injuries are almost twice as common. According to the American Society for Surgery of the Hand
, 14% of injuries involve the foot, ankle or toes, while 22% involve the wrist, hand or fingers—the main cause being direct contact with a rotating or jammed blade. To avoid these injuries, never put your hands near the moving parts of a snow blower or lawnmower. If an object is stuck in any part of the machine, turn it off, then disconnect the spark plug or power cord before removing the object.
Power tool safety
Power tools, including electric saws, sanders, nail guns, garden trimmers (electric and cordless), and other devices can make projects easier, but also dangerous when used incorrectly. To ensure your safety when working with power tools, always follow the instructions provided with your tool and do not override any safety guards. Also, remember to keep your fingers and hands away from any triggers when carrying portable tools, and do not wear loose clothing or jewelry. When cleaning scraps or trimmings, or should an item get lodged in your tool, never use your hands to remove it. Instead, use a long stick, making sure the power source is turned off first.
Understanding these and other risk factors for hand injuries is the best way to prevent one from happening to you. To learn more about the non-injury-related hand conditions we treat, visit our diagnosis & treatment page.