Here at Gentle Professional Foot Care we would like to put an end to injuries caused by power mowers. Each year it’s estimated that over 37,000 accidents occur while mowing the lawn and many of these result in devastating injuries to the toes, feet and ankles. The people with the greatest number of mower-related injuries are adults over the age of 44 and children under the age of 14. The good news is that the vast majority of these accidents can be avoided. Below are some do’s and don’ts to observe to keep your feet safe while using a power mower. Although some of them may seem obvious, we’ll continue to remind patients about them until we no longer see mower injuries for preventable reasons:
Don’t: wear sneakers, open-toed shoes or mow your lawn barefoot. Mower blades turn at 3,000 revolutions per minute, producing three times the kinetic energy of a .357 handgun. That’s why work boots or other heavy shoes are recommended to prevent amputations and deep wounds.
Do: wait a sufficient amount of time after it rains for your lawn to dry completely before mowing. The top cause of mower accidents is losing control of a mower on wet grass.
Do: instruct children not to come out to you while you are mowing the lawn. Let them know that the loud noise of the mower will make it impossible for you to hear them coming and could result in an injury to them.
Don’t: allow children to ride on your lap when mowing the lawn, no matter how much they beg!
Don’t: attempt to pull a running mower backward.
Do: mow sloped lawns from side to side rather than up and down.
Don’t: wait till you’re done mowing to treat what seems like a minor cut from a lawn mower blade. The dirt on the blades can cause an infection and even small wounds should be cleaned immediately, treated with antibiotic ointment and covered with a bandage.
Do: follow up with our podiatrist Dr. Charles A. Suleskey if you do sustain a mower injury. Our foot doctor will want to check the injured area and make sure that healing is taking place, as well as prescribe any additional treatments or therapies that you may need to make a full recovery. Contact our Venice office for an appointment by calling: 941-493-7999.