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Halloween & Pumpkin Carving Safety Tips

During Halloween, many parents and children carve pumpkins to celebrate. Without close supervision and caution, pumpkin carving can lead to serious hand injuries.??


Most hand injuries occur when children try to use kitchen knives to carve pumpkins. Many of these knives lack a safety guard to protect children's hands from slipping down the blade, increasing the risk of serious injury. The injury can be so severe that nerve or tendon damage may occur and the function of the hand may be affected.


Parents can prevent painful or serious hand injuries during Halloween by following these simple safety tips:

  • Use a pumpkin carving knife or saw specifically designed for carving a pumpkin to lessen the chance of injury.
  • Allow younger children to decorate with markers, crayons, paints or stickers.
  • Always use common sense and never trick-or-treat alone. Young children should always go trick-or-treating with an adult.
  • Stay in groups of at least three or more.
  • Plan your entire route and make sure your family is aware of the route.
  • Choose flame-retardant costumes.
  • Wait to eat your candy until a trusted adult has inspected it.
  • Be very cautious of strangers.
  • Visit only houses where the lights are on and accept treats only in the doorway. Never go inside a house.
  • Be sure and say thank you for your treats.
  • Don't play near lit jack-o-lanterns.
  • Walk, do not run, and stay on sidewalks and driveways.
  • Cross the street only at the corner or in a crosswalk.
  • Carry a cellular phone if possible.
  • Wear a watch.
  • Carry a flashlight.

 To learn more about the UofL Health - Jewish Hospital Hand Care Center, please contact 502.587.4799 or 502.561.4263. For additional information on hand care emergencies, call 502.540.3727.