Parents urged to use door safety catches to prevent thousands of hand injuries
Parents are being urged to use door safety catches to prevent their children suffering serious hand injuries.
The British Association of Plastic and Reconstructive Surgeons (Bapras) said cheap door-stoppers and protectors or catches should be used to prevent thousands of children getting their fingers or hands crushed.
Fingertip injuries are the most common hand injury seen by plastic and reconstructive surgeons, with toddlers most at risk.
The Royal Society for the Prevention of Accidents (Rospa) has estimated that 30,000 children trap their fingers in doors at home, school, cars, nursery or in shops.
Bapras spokeswoman Anna De Leo, a surgeon based at the Royal Free Hospital in London, said: "It's easy to underestimate how important your hands are to doing everyday tasks.
"Injuries to fingers and hands mean tying your shoe laces, typing, holding a mobile phone or eating become a lot more challenging.
"And this is nothing compared to the impact of a finger amputation."
She said people may joke about fingertip injuries but they could have a life-long impact.
"The injuries are so serious, that the patient would need to undergo a clinic appointment, an X-ray, day surgery, a follow up nurse appointment and possibly physiotherapy," she said.
Meanwhile, amputation could lead to elbow pain, migraines and even depression.
She added: "Fingertip injury alone can result in 20% loss of hand strength and can prevent people from pursuing their chosen career."
Bapras said self-shutting heavy fire doors were a particular risk, as were car doors and door hinges.