Many people have dislocated a finger at some point in their lives. While these minor injuries often occur while playing sports such as basketball, they can also be the result of falling onto an outstretched hand or catching your finger between two objects.
Jammed fingers can be extremely painful and require immediate treatment to aid healing. If the finger is broken, a lack of treatment can lead to arthritis or other debilitating conditions, according to the Hospital for Special Surgery in New York. Symptoms of a jammed or dislocated finger include
- inability to straighten or bend your finger
- crooked or swollen finger
- numbness, tingling or pale color in the finger
The first thing you can do on your own is to remove all rings from the hand, then ice and elevate the injured finger to minimize swelling. Apply ice for 15 minutes, wait until the finger temperature returns to normal and repeat the process. After the swelling goes down and the pain diminishes, try to move the finger very slightly. If the injury is mild, you will be able to move it with little discomfort after a short time.
If your finger has a break in the skin, feels cold or numb, or looks pale, seek medical attention right away. After taking an x-ray of your finger, your physician may prescribe a splint to minimize motion or may “buddy tape” your injured finger to an adjacent finger to keep it straight and protected as the tendon or bone heals.
During the healing process and with your physician’s advice, we will recommend a series of strengthening exercises to ensure that your finger mends quickly and properly. We will prescribe assisted finger stretches and finger bends, along with resistance exercises using a rubber band. This exercise regimen will focus on protecting the injured finger, strengthening it and maximizing your range of motion so that your hand can get back to normal functioning as soon as possible.
Make sure a jammed finger doesn’t leave you with a permanent injury. After seeing your physician, visit us. We can help you get your finger out of whatever jam it got into.