Many types of crafts are done in the home, where women
work alone. This makes them less likely to know of common
health problems caused by work and how to prevent them.
Common health problems from work with crafts
Craft or skill
What to do
Lung diseases similar to
those miners get (fibrosis,
Open windows and doors for
better air flow. Blow air out
with a fan if there is electricity.
Wear a protective mask that
keeps dust out.
knitting, lace making,
Eye strain, headaches,
low back and neck pain,
See ‘Lead poisoning’, page 403.
If possible, increase the amount of
light on your work and rest often.
See ‘Sitting or Standing for a Long
Time’ and ‘Repeating the Same
Work with wool and cotton
Use of paints and dyes
Asthma and lung
problems from dust
See ‘Work with
Skin irritation and burns
Improve air flow (see above),
and wear a mask that will not let
See the prevention information in
‘Work with Chemicals’, page 403.
Use protective gloves and avoid
contact with lye.
Many factories have unsafe working conditions, such as:
• closed and locked doors and windows, which make it
impossible for workers to get out during emergencies,
and which keep air from flowing freely.
• exposure to toxins, such as
chemicals and radiation, without
protective barriers or clothing.
• unsafe equipment.
• fire hazards, like loose electrical
wires, or chemicals or vapors that
• no safe water, toilets or latrines,
or rest breaks.
If your workplace is hot, drink plenty
of liquids and eat salted foods—
especially if you are pregnant. Women
are more likely to get heat stroke
Where Women Have No Doctor 2012