Don’t you just love weekends? From sleeping in on Saturday morning to sharing pizza and wings over your team’s football game, weekends are the perfect opportunity to do as much or as little as you please. For many, this includes projects around the house, like finally hanging up those pictures on the wall or surprising your kids with a playset you assembled yourself. Whether you love to work on home improvement projects or they’re simply items on your honey-do list, we’ve compiled some tips to keep you happily hammering away instead of nursing an injured hand from a project gone wrong.
Don’t Hold the Nail
If you’ve ever worked with a hammer, you know what it’s like to aim for the nail with a good amount of force only to miss and hit your precious thumb or finger—ouch! Instead of holding the nail in place with your hand, stick the nail in between the teeth of a hair comb—and voila! Your digits will be protected from the wrath of your hammer.
Take Breaks Often
We might sound like a broken record over here, constantly telling you to take breaks when participating in activities with repetitive motions, but it’s such a simple and important step in preventing carpal tunnel syndrome or trigger finger. Anything that requires you to do the same thing over and over for an extended period of time (like painting a fence) or requires a power tool that vibrates (like sanding furniture with a power sander) can put you at risk for developing these hand conditions—and trust us, you do not want to mess with them if you can avoid it.
Gloves are a great and easy way to protect your hands when working on projects around the house. They can protect against cuts, burns, splinters, and other common hand injuries. Be sure to get a pair that is appropriate for the project you plan to work on—one that will offer plenty of protection. A cut-resistant pair of gloves is a good choice if you plan on working with saws or knives, while impact-resistant gloves can minimize vibration when working with power tools.
Keep Your First Aid Kit Stocked
Everyone should have a first aid kit on hand. Make sure it’s well stocked with plenty of bandages, sterile gauze, antibiotic ointment, and adhesive tape. Of course, if your injury is more serious than a minor scrape or cut, or if you’re not sure how serious it is, it’s always best to play it safe and visit a doctor.
Use a Clamp to Hold Objects in Place
When using a nail gun or a pressure washer, never hold the item you’re working on in your hand. The reason for this is that the nail could shoot through the piece of wood into your hand and a pressure washer is so powerful it can seriously damage your skin.
With so many online tutorials and Pinterest boards full of inspiration, the possibilities for your Saturday home improvement projects are endless—unless you slice your hand open trying to saw a piece of wood, of course. Follow these tips to stay safe. Happy DIYing!
If you’re dealing with a hand condition that causes pain or makes it difficult to use your hands, don’t hesitate to contact us. Your hand health is our priority—and it should be yours as well! We’ll work with you to find a personalized treatment plan so you can get back to doing the things you love most (like building the most ornate birdhouse on the block). To stay up-to-date on everything happening at HSST, make sure to follow us on Facebook. Our hands heal yours!