A broken finger is a standard injury often resulting from a fall, a sports related injury or another type of trauma sustained to the finger. It generally takes up to 6 weeks to heal.
A crack in the bone is also referred to as a fracture.
Identifying Between A Broken And Injured Finger
It can be tricky to see if a finger is broken, displaced or just sprained, as the signs tend to be the same – the finger will be inflamed, aching and hard.
Look to see whether your finger appears distorted. If a portion of the finger is facing in a different direction, the bone is possibly broken or dislocated (with a dislocated finger, the bone has shifted out of its normal position, generally looks distorted).
A dislocated or broken finger might also look discolored (this appears when the blood vessels have ruptured), and you will feel a piercing pain when you touch it.
If you have split your fingertip there will be blood noticeable underneath the nail as well as a contusion on the padding of the finger.
Sprains And Strains
With a sprained finger, it signifies you’ve sprained the tendons (clusters of tissue that keep the bones combined at the joint).
The finger shouldn’t appear distorted or bruised and the pain and inflammation will eventually subside.
If you believe it is a sprain, don’t use the finger and look to see if the pain and inflammation gets better.
Dealing With A Fracture
If you think your finger is broken, you will have to get an X-ray to see whether it is fractured.
If the finger is fractured, the bone must be shifted back to its original position – a process identified as reduction. A local anesthetic will be administered to numb the finger and doctors will be able to straighten the bone.
The finger might then need to be reinforced in a splint, or might just need to be taped to the finger.
Related Video On Broken Fingers
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