If an individual has injured the tendons and ligaments in the thumb, it might be sprained or strained and requires splinting in order to minimize the pain, protect the thumb and immobilize the joints while it heals.
Today, you can easily purchase splints and supports in drug stores and pharmacies. You can even create your own by simply using sturdy objects such as a tongue depressor and medical tape to secure the affected thumb and hand for added support. Creating a thumb splint for a strained finger is fairly straightforward and can be easily achieved in a few steps. You can learn this if you will register for first aid training today.
Steps in splinting a strained thumb
- First, you have to decide if you are going to use a splint or create one. When buying one, you have to select a thumb splint that is built with padding as well as providing support for the thumb and surrounding hand. If you want to create your own, you can use a tongue depressor. Just make sure that it is clean and does not have any splinters or cracks that can cause further harm on the affected thumb.
- Jewelry must be removed from the affected hand to protect against the swelling. If you will place a splint over a ring on the affected finger, it will only cause discomfort and pain.
- The affected hand must be placed on a table with the thumb on the top of the hand. Try to keep the thumb in a straight position.
- Position the tongue depressor against the palm side of the thumb. Make sure that it is long enough to cover from the tip of the thumb up to the wrist just below the lower thumb joint to immobilize the thumb. When a prepared splint is used that has padding, you have to place the padding against the skin of the thumb on the palm side.
- Wrap an adhesive or medical tape around the tip to secure the splint and then another piece around the first joint and the tongue depressor. Take note that this will help secure the splint to the hand. Lastly, apply a third piece of tape around the base of the thumb by the wrist to ensure that the end is secure. The individual should not be able to bend the thumb at all.
- Always secure the splint using a gauze bandage on a roll. You can use a 2-inch wide bandage and secure over the thumb, splint and also the wrist a number of times until the thumb is completely enclosed and protected from top to bottom.
When a readymade splint is used, you have to follow the directions on the packaging. You can place a sling on the arm to remind the individual not to use the affected finger and to rest the hand.