The American Society for Surgery of the Hand reports that over 88% of Americans eat turkey on Thanksgiving, and that means A LOT of carving!

The Holidays have finally arrived, and that means it’s time to break out our carving tools.  Luckily we only use these carving tools a few times a year. However, that means many of us are out of practice which leaves us more susceptible to injury.  If you plan on being the Thanksgiving star this year by carving up the bird, help protect against injuries to your hand by following these simple safety tips… 

Never Cut Towards Yourself

Your free hand should always be safely placed OPPOSITE the side that you are cutting towards. In other words, always keep both hands and your body out of the path of your cut.

Do NOT place your hand underneath the blade to catch the slice of meat

This is VERY DANGEROUS no matter what you are cutting, leaving you likely to slice your palm in the process. Let the slice of meat fall to a cutting board or other surface instead. 

Make sure your tools are sharp

This might sound silly, but using dull tools requires you to use more force to cut through your turkey. This makes you more likely to rip through or slip & slide around, cutting yourself. Sharp tools glide more easily through your meats.

Keep everything in your work space clean and dry

All of your surroundings should be dry!  Your hands, your knife handles, your cutting board, as well as your surrounding cutting area or countertop. This helps avoid slips and slides that result in an injury! Everything should be dry… except your turkey! (haha)

Do NOT use a knife to cut through bones

We all love to use the bones for either broth or making gravy. Try using your kitchen scissors instead. This is what kitchen scissors are designed for. They make the job both easier for you and more safe for your hands. 

If you do have a turkey carving accident…

Clean and keep continuous pressure on the wound. Seek immediate medical help  if you are unable to stop the bleeding, you are unsure of your Tetanus status, or you are unable to thoroughly cleanse the wound.

We often take advantage of our Hands, don’t forget how important they are. We use them as our primary tools for exploring the world; an injury can permanently impact your home and work life. Please be safe this season!