When carving pumpkins, remember to use specifically designed carving knives, rather than kitchen knives, as they are less likely to get stuck in the thick pumpkin skin.
Pumpkin carving brings out the kid in all of us. Memories of traditions like trick-or-treating, costumes and haunted houses all come to mind as the art of carving begins. But as innocent as it appears, your jack-o-lantern can land you in the emergency room.
Halloween is among the top three holidays producing the most ER visits with accidental lacerations and puncture wounds to the hands and fingers.
The American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons gives these tips to keep you and your family safe:
• When carving pumpkins, remember to use specifically designed carving knives, rather than kitchen knives, as they are less likely to get stuck in the thick pumpkin skin. Carve the pumpkin in small, controlled strokes, away from yourself on a strong, sturdy surface.
• Carving knives should be kept in a clean, dry, well-lit area. Any moisture on the tools, hands, or table can cause the knife to slip, leading to injuries.
• Children should never carve pumpkins. Try painting pumpkins for a fun, creative option.
• Think of fire hazards when lighting jack-o-lantern candles, by using glow sticks or artificial lights instead.
If you should cut a finger or hand, make sure the hand is elevated higher than your heart and apply direct pressure with a clean cloth to the wound to stop the bleeding.
Have a fun, spooktacular, and safe Halloween.