Easy Ways to Bandage an Injured Finger
We use our fingers to touch, interact and grasp, so when they are injured it creates a massive impact. This article will cover what you need to know about bandaging an injured finger.
How to bandage a finger?
Short answer: bandage the finger by winding it around in spiraling turns, making sure it is applied firmly and secured with a bandage clip, safety pin, or tape.
- Using the right size of bandage matters significantly, as there are different widths of bandage available
- The bandage should not be tight, because if it is too tight the person’s circulation could be in critical danger.
- The toe or finger should not be covered so that circulation can be checked
- As long as the bandage is not bulky, and the person is comfortable
What injuries are bandages suitable for?
Bandages are used in a variety of medical injuries, and it may depend on where they are as well. They are used for:
- Sprains or strains
- Controlling bleeding
- Securing a dressing over a wound
- Injured joints
It should be noted that the patient will be in a great deal of pain in all of the above injuries, and will have to be treated accordingly.
Sprains or strains
A sprain occurs when a ligament is torn or stretched, and when this happens it is extremely painful and is most likely to swell up considerably.
A strain is when the muscle or a tendon is injured - minor injuries are overstretching, while major strain injuries consist of complete or partial tears in the tissues.
In the case of both injuries, there could be surgery, plus physical therapy that will be needed for the healing process.
Bleeding is another injury that could become fatal if not taken care properly, and has to be stopped before it gets worse.
There needs to be firm pressure on the wound until the bleeding stops and once it is cleaned, it will be covered with gauze/bandage.
In the event that the bleeding does not stop, clots could potentially occur and medical assistance will be a requirement.
Bandages are generally used as a second layer of protection for holding dressings in place in order to
- Provide pain relief
- Prevent infection
- Stem bleeding
- Absorb exudate
Other than sprains and strains, there are many other common joint injuries, especially in the knee since it is made up of four main structures:
Joint injuries will take time to heal, depending on whether it is the ligament, bone, cartilage or tendon.
What types of bandages are suitable?
An extensive variety of bandages are available for specific purposes and areas, including your fingers.
It is important to note that a finger injury is more delicate than any other body part, and it has to be done correctly.
Some types of bandages used include:
- Strip bandage
- Self Cohesive bandages
- Tubular bandages
With each of the above mentioned bandages there is a specific manner of wrapping the bandage around the injured finger.
A strip bandage is one of the best ways to bandage a finger, however it has to be done in such a manner that it is wrapped comfortably around the finger.
As mentioned at the beginning of the article, it is crucial to keep the person’s circulation in mind, because other issues may arise if the bandage is wrapped around too tight.
The strip bandage can be covered with additional cloth strips for extra protection, but this is optional and not compulsory.
Gauze has been around for quite some time now, and is known for the fabric that makes it more breathable.
There are some that are multi-layered, while others are only one layer.
It is initially used to hold dressings in place for it to stay in place, after the wound is dressed with sterile material.
The purpose of gauze is to make sure that
- Wounds are kept clean and dry
- Germs and dirt kept away
- Absorbs fluid
- Protects scrapes, cuts, and burns
Gauze comes in different sizes, for example:
- (2 x 2)
- (3 x 3)
- (4 x 4)
While allowing the wound to be kept clean and dry, it:
- Allows air to ventilate the bandage
- Which helps the skin to heal faster
- Prevents excess moisture around the wound area
According to preferences, there is heavy duty gauze and thinner gauze available.
Self Cohesive bandages
Self Cohesive bandages have been designed specifically to compress an injury, and stay in place without the use of tape, because of self-adhesive properties. As tape is used generally to wrap around the bandage and seal it in place, the self cohesive bandage is the answer to not having hair removed when taking it off.
Self Cohesive bandages are used in many medical situations:
- Injury recovery
- General wound care (includes finger protection)
- Sport injuries
Self Cohesive bandages are a comfortable alternative to use rather than other types of bandages.
These bandages are the preferred choice by most medical professionals since they are:
- Helps to cushion joints and soft tissues
- Perfect for protecting body parts after surgery
Similar to the self cohesive bandages, the purpose of the tubular bandage is to cover a dressing, and they can naturally stretch according to the body contours.
Tubular bandages come in different sizes and can be used for all areas of the body, fingers and toes included.
A few advantages of tubular bandages:
- It is loose and will not come out
- The dressing will be in place safely
How to effectively bandage a fractured finger
Fractured fingers are a common injury to occur in fingers, with varying degrees of severeness. It could either be minor or more serious, where stitches or surgery will be needed.
If not treated carefully, the patient’s hand function will be affected in the long term as a result.
The fractured finger will have to be first examined at a hospital, where it will be X-Rayed.
Bandaging the fractured finger effectively would mean the following methods will be used:
- Buddy taped
This method is only used for minor fractures, and if there is no visible abnormality.
Buddy taping is a very basic first aid technique, used mainly to stabilize the injured finger.
It is done after the doctor is 100% sure that the fracture will heal without any foreseeable issues.
Splinting is used to keep the finger fracture in place, and to provide pain relief.
It will be kept like that till the fracture heals, which could be approximately three to four weeks, but that may depend.
They are placed to:
- Prevent further damage
- Immobilize the injury
- Support healing
It is important to remember that it prevents motion in the finger and is considered a very effective first aid technique.
What should I do when the injury involves my nails?
Nail injuries are another common hand injury, and more the reason for immediate action to be taken, because exactly like a fractured finger it could get infected and other serious complications like.
There will be symptoms that you will have to look out for, and they are
- Excruciating pain
One of the first things to do when the nail bed is injured is to make sure that it:
- If it is bleeding, apply direct pressure with a dry and clean cloth
- It will be cleaned with preferably warm water using a sterile cloth
- Kept elevated until further medical assistance
Most nail injuries can be treated at home, but that may depend on the severity of the injury.
Band Aids are available specifically for the fingernail or fingertip area, making it easier to adjust according to the level of injury.
Here are four easy steps to wrap a band aid around the injured finger:
- The injured nail will be cleaned using water and dried first and it will be put in gauze
- Position the finger at the bottom half the band aid and it will be centered
- Wrap it securely around the finger
- Press it firmly and make sure the bottom half of the band aid is in place and that it fits properl
You can check the bandages we have available here.
How long will it take for an injured finger to heal?
The answer is that there is no specific time period for the finger to heal, because it depends on the type of injury.
Hypothetically it may be approximately 3 to 4 months or more for the finger to regain full capacity and strength.
There will be steady improvements initially, but it will take some time.
Is therapy done for a finger fracture?
Yes, there are certain exercises done to avoid the finger becoming stiff. They are known as ‘rehab exercises’.
Your doctor will recommend some exercises for you to do, and you will have to follow exactly what the doctor says.
It will be done until the fracture has fully healed and recovered.
We hope you found this article on easy ways to bandage an injured finger helpful.
Having discussed how to bandage an injured finger and the types of bandages needed, you will now know what to do just in case!