The hand care specialists at OrthoSC have put together some safety guidelines for the whole family to follow when pumpkin carving. These tips and tricks will help people avoid injuries while carving and decorating pumpkins for Halloween. Patients seeking specialized hand care are encouraged to call (843) 353-3460. Same-day and next-day appointments are available at the practice’s Carolina Forest location in Myrtle Beach at 210 Village Center Blvd., Suite 200, in Conway at 2376 Cypress Circle, Suite 300, and in Murrells Inlet at 3545 Frontage Rd., Suite 200.

“Hand injuries and finger injuries are a common risk when it comes to pumpkin carving,” says Dr. J. Christopher Gayton, fellowship-trained hand and upper extremity surgeon at OrthoSC. “As part of our commitment to keeping our community safe, we developed some helpful guidelines to follow so everyone can enjoy a safe Halloween.”

Follow these safety tips from OrthoSC to help avoid common pumpkin-carving injuries:

  • Make sure that the space you're using to carve is clean and well-lit as well as stable. To avoid slipping accidents, your workspace, your pumpkins and your tools should all be dry and kept clean throughout the process.
  • Do not use kitchen knives, pocket knives or any tools not designed for pumpkin carving. You should only use the tools that come with a pumpkin carving kit since those are specifically created for safe pumpkin carving.
  • When you carve a pumpkin, always use your non-carving hand to keep the pumpkin stable. Carve away from your body, and take your time.
  • Only adults should handle sharp tools and carving. Children can draw the outline and help with cleaning the pumpkin. When someone is carving, everyone should be at least an arm’s length away.
  • You can also decorate your pumpkins with paint, markers, yarn, paper or fabric for a safer alternative to carving.

“If you get injured while carving pumpkins,” adds Dr. Gayton, “be sure that you clean out the wound with both soap and water and put pressure on the area. If you experience numbness, pain or loss of movement in your hand or finger, seek immediate medical attention.”

To learn more about pumpkin carving injuries or to request a same-day or next-day appointment at OrthoSC, please call (843) 353-3460.