Splinters occur when a tiny piece of wood gets hedged in the skin, it is said to have one of the most surprisingly painful sensations. No sooner has your hand brushed against a wooden surface than a splinter appears on your hand along with this sharp pain and uncomfortable sensation. One has to be very careful in removing these splinters in order for it not to result in a bigger injury, infections, or a higher level of pain.
To remove a splinter from your skin, the following steps should be followed;
- Clean surfaces: The first step in removing a splinter is to make sure both your hands are washed with soap and water. After washing, take a clean dry towel to dab carefully around the splinter until you have a clean dry surface
- Examine the Splinter: To get better knowledge on how to remove it, it is important to examine the splinter. It is to be removed in the same direction that it entered through. This is to avoid creating an injury or causing excessive bleeding after removal. To examine the splinter, place your finger under natural light and if it is really small it is advised to use a magnifying glass.
- To remove the splinter use tweezers: Never try to squeeze out a splinter, it will either result in the splinter breaking in your skin, excessive pain, or scarring of that area. It is advised to use well sterilized tweezers. To sterilize the tweezers, dip the tip of the tweezers in rubbing alcohol for five minutes before use. If the tip of the splinter is visible, gently use the tweezers to pull the splinter out from the same direction it came in.
- To remove non-visible splinters: If the entire splinter is embedded under the skin, a small needle can be used to remove it. To begin, use rubbing alcohol to sterilize the needle and tweezers. After that, gently pierce the skin at one end of the splinter with the needle. This may necessitate the assistance of a friend or family member. Continue to carefully push out a portion of the splinter with the needle. Use the tweezers to gently pull out the splinter once one end is sticking out.
- Application of Petroleum Jelly: After removing the splinter, clean the area with soap and water and apply petroleum jelly. Cover the wound with plaster to heal.
Note that even though most splinters can be removed in the comfort of your home, you should visit a hospital if the splinter is really deep, large, infected, or located in or close to sensitive areas like your eyes