There are dozens of reasons to use knives in the kitchen regularly. They are used for chopping, cutting, carving vegetables or fruits. But, many people don’t know anything about knife safety.
This leads to an estimated 300,000 visits to the emergency room every year. Whether you are preparing a snack in the kitchen or using a box cutter on the job, it’s extremely important to understand safe knife handling.
Unless, of course, you like visiting the hospital and possibly losing fingers. Since you probably don’t, you should keep reading to learn how to use a knife safely, since there will always be a reason to use knives.
1. Keep Knives Sharp
It seems counter-intuitive, right? Sharp knives could more easily cause injury.
The truth is dull knives are more dangerous. When a knife is dull, we often have to press harder to get it to cut. The problem is that excessive force leads to more accidents when blades slip or cut too deeply.
Keeping knives sharp, letting others know that knives are sharp, and using them gently is far safer than cutting with dull blades.
2. Always Cut Away From Yourself
The biggest rookie mistake when it comes to cutting in any environment is cutting towards yourself. It’s very common to finish cutting an object, and your hand, if you do this.
This happens even more so when using force to cut something tough. You never want to risk a knife swinging towards your body, as there are many veins and arteries that could be deadly if cut on accident.
3. Don’t Catch a Falling Knife
It will happen sooner or later. You might drop a knife, or it might be knocked off a counter or table.
Never try to catch a knife or any other sharp object. Let it fall and stop moving before safely picking it up. Alert others nearby if a knife is falling.
4. Use the Correct Knives
There are many different types of knives for a reason; they are designed to cut different things. Bread knives should only be used for bread. Box cutters should only be used for boxes. Don’t get lazy, or you could get hurt.
5. Use Retractable Knives
Retractable knives serve a variety of purposes, on the job or on the field. The benefit is that the blade is safely hidden away inside the knife handle when not in use.
This makes it great for keeping on your person or in a bag. Out-the-front (OTF) knives are a popular choice. Take a look at the MTU1 if you are looking for an all-purpose, retractable knife.
6. Teach Your Children Early
It can be tempting to keep knives away from your children as long as possible. The problem with that is that they won’t know how to safely handle one when they inevitably come in contact with a knife.
Instead, get your toddlers a child-safe knife and teach them best practices early on.
7. Learn How to Use Your Specific Knife
Every knife is designed to be handled differently. If you regularly use a pocket knife, spend a few minutes reading and watching how to use a pocket knife effectively.
Prefer to carry around a butterfly knife? Make sure you read expert advice on how to use a butterfly knife. Become a safety expert at whichever knives you use frequently.
Prioritize Knife Safety
Knives are a far greater risk than most people realize. With such a high occurrence of knife injury in the country, it’s important to learn and practice knife safety. No one has time or money to spend on a visit to the emergency room.
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