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Hardworking hands are tools in themselves. In fact, they’re the most valuable tools that you own. You can’t replace them when broken, and you can’t simply grab another pair when they’re worn out. You have to take care of what you’ve got and preserve them so that you can work hard for another day.
Especially if your hands bear the brunt of a difficult job, a little proactive care can help keep them in good shape. Here are 4 ways to protect your moneymakers so that they can, in turn, protect your livelihood.
#1: Do Hand Exercises Regularly
Repetitive strain injuries (or RSIs) happen when workers go through the same motions again and again throughout the day. They can happen just as easily to computer operators as they can to workers using hand tools on the job. While there are some times when you can’t avoid the repetitive nature of a job, Campanile Hand Surgery in Denver, CO, says you can help prevent injuries caused by repetitive movements by performing hand exercises on a regular basis.
Here are some simple exercises that will not only keep your hands flexible, but that can also help reduce arthritis pain:
Also: don’t forget your wrists! They’re an important part of hand health. Hold your arm out straight with your hand hanging down, and use the opposite hand to press your fingers back toward you.
#2: Take Meaningful Breaks to Give Hands a Rest
Harvard RSI Action says breaks can help reduce the likelihood of repetitive strain injury, too. Taking several short breaks throughout the day is better than a few long breaks, and they only need to last about 10 minutes each time.
Try to determine how long you can perform your job before your hands start to feel strained or cramped. That’s the limit that you can reach before risking an RSI. Reduce that time by about 10 minutes, and you’ll get a break before strain begins, not after.
#3: Always Wear Proper Work Gloves
The importance of wearing the right hand protection for the job can’t be overstated — especially since hazards and risks vary depending on the industry. For some workers, there’s the risk of being cut on the job. Some need protection against extreme heat or flames. And, some jobs put workers at risk of hand injuries in several different ways at once.
Proper work gloves guard against on-the-job injuries, and Superior Glove has thousands of glove styles that offer many different types of protection. For this reason, no matter which industry you work in, we’ve got a glove that gives you the right freedom of movement paired with the right level of protection to keep hands healthy and injury-free.
#4: Don’t Forget About Your Skin
There are two ways of approaching skin health for people who work hard with their hands. Some folks use moisturiser to keep skin supple, and to prevent painful cracks. But, some choose to avoid moisturiser because hard-earned calluses can also help protect against injuries, depending on the nature of the work you’re doing.
If you don’t want to encourage calluses, use a penetrating moisturiser. Since oils won’t moisturise or soak in, you’ll want to make sure that it has at least some water content. Moisturising means replenishing or preserving your skin’s water content. But, if you feel like calluses are protective in your line of work, use a small amount of heavy, greasy salve or balm that doesn’t soak in. It will also help protect against chapped hands and cracked skin, but won’t soften up calluses.
You abuse your hands every day and subject them to conditions that are questionable at best, so the least that you can do is take every precaution to protect them against known hazards. Don’t overstrain your hands, (it can lead to permanent injuries!) and use exercise therapy to keep them strong and minimize the effects of arthritis. And, never forget to wear the best work gloves for the job.
Not sure if you’re wearing the best gloves for your industry? Perhaps it’s time to request a glove audit. Our glove experts will help you evaluate the gloves that you’re currently using, and recommend options that could keep your workers’ hands safer throughout the work day. And, to top it all off, it’s FREE!
So, what have you got to lose? Click the button below to sign up for your free glove audit now.
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Hand Injury Rates are Reduced by 60% when using the right gloves.