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What is Industrial Hand Trauma?

The hand is one of the most flexible and useful parts of our body. Because of overuse in various activities, the hands are more prone to injuries, such as sprains and strains, fractures and dislocations, lacerations and amputations while operating machinery, bracing against a fall and during sports. Workplace or industrial hand trauma is the leading cause of lost workplace work hours and visits to the emergency room. Industrial hand injuries can be minor to life-threatening.

Causes of Industrial Hand Trauma

Common causes of industrial hand trauma include:

  • Not wearing proper hand gloves
  • Wearing inadequate hand gloves such as loose-fitting, damaged or wrong type
  • Improper training in the use of safety equipment
  • Worn out personal safety equipment

Prevention of Industrial Hand Trauma

Prevention is always better than a cure. It is important for every employer to take proper preventive precautions. As the saying goes “to be forewarned is to be forearmed”, employers need to ensure proper procedures and adequate safety equipment is in place.

Regular risk assessments within the workplace or industry too can help in avoiding unnecessary injuries. Proper training, clear signage, alertness, etc., can go a long way in preventing workplace hand injuries.

Type of Gloves to Wear for Preventing Hand Trauma

  • Fabric and cotton gloves that protect against abrasions and keep hands clean.
  • Coated fabric gloves that provide protection against moderate concentrations of chemicals for wearing in laboratory
  • Plastic, rubber, or synthetic gloves for cleaning or working with solvents, oils, and other chemicals.
  • Leather gloves for welding to protect against cuts and abrasions.
  • Aluminized gloves for welding, furnace or foundry work.
  • Kevlar gloves for industrial applications to protect against both heat and cold.
  • Gloves for specific chemical resistance
  • American Orthopaedic Society for Sports Medicine
  • American Association for Hand Surgery
  • American Academy Of Orthopaedic Surgeons
  • The American Board of Pediatrics
  • North American Spine Society
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