Hand injuries are some of the worst that can occur on the job. This is because a hand injury impacts every aspect of a person’s life. From cuts to repetitive-stress injuries, these painful issues may result in a worker taking time off and needing to file for workers’ compensation.
There are several common hand injuries people suffer on the job including:
- Avulsions and detachments
- Crushing injuries
- Puncture wounds
Among these, cuts and lacerations are the most common and are the cause of around 63% of all hand-related injuries. Crushing injuries are the second most common, while the other causes make up around 20% of all injuries.
Human error is a leading cause of injury on the job
As you may expect, human error is a leading cause of hand injuries on the job. A small distraction could result in a person looking away long enough that they end up getting cut on a sharp object or believing that their hand is out of the way when it isn’t could lead to a crushing injury if it gets shut in a drawer or door.
Repetitive strain also plays a role in hand injuries
Since people’s hands are used every day, it’s not surprising that many people suffer from repetitive strain injuries. These may be reduced by taking breaks or performing special hand stretches, but constant use of the hands, such as with regular typing, may result in serious injuries over time.
What can you do about hand injuries in the workplace?
The good news is that there are some things you can do to reduce the likelihood of hand injuries. For example, if you’ll be working around sharp objects, wearing special gloves to prevent lacerations could help.
If you’re working in an office setting and type often, you may want to think about taking more regular breaks to give your hands a rest. Typing a bit slower, opting to use ergonomic keyboards and mice and limiting your activities can help prevent strain over time.
Hand injuries are common, but the right attitude toward workplace safety helps. If you do get hurt on the job, don’t delay in reporting it. Hand injuries may be smaller, but they have the potential to cause lifelong pain and dysfunction.