In specific environments and industries, double gloving is an essential part of keeping employees safe, and minimizing any injury or illness being spread. The biggest, and most common environment where double gloving is practiced is in the healthcare industry, specifically for surgeons and nurses in the operating room. It is essential for surgical staff to double glove because it significantly reduces the risk of being exposed to patient blood or other bodily fluids if the first glove gets ripped or punctured. It is basically a 50/50 chance that a glove will get punctured during surgery, making it vital to wear two pairs of gloves.
Typically, a team of doctors and nurses performing surgery will not notice that their glove was punctured until surgery is over. This means that if they wear only one pair of gloves, their exposure to patient blood or other fluids could have serious effects. However, if they consistently double glove, they will largely eliminate the risk of being contaminated during surgery.
One great way to help surgeons and nurses in their double gloving ventures, is to wear two different colored gloves. That way, when the first glove gets punctured or perforated (perforations and punctures occur a vast majority of the time) they will easily be able to spot that their glove has been compromised.
If you are someone working in the medical field who is performing surgery in an operating room, you should double glove, no questions asked. The risk of glove puncture and the danger of exposure to blood born infections is high enough to warrant consistent double gloving, regardless of what type of surgery is being performed.
Many people are concerned that wearing two pairs of gloves will reduce tactile sensitivity, making it more difficult to perform such difficult tasks that happen in surgical procedures. However, many studies have shown that there is really no noticeable difference between single and double gloving. One great tip for those who need to double glove is to wear a larger sized glove on the outer layer for optimized tactile sensitivity. It is an adjustment to switch to double gloving, so give yourself a few days for your hands to get used to the double layer, and you will see that your dexterity will be maintained.
So yes, sometimes double gloving IS really necessary.