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Are You an Undercover Nurse? Here’s How To Treat Sprains Immediately

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A splint is designed to provide pain relief to an injured party or prevent any further injuries from taking place. However, that is only if the splint is applied correctly. As with everything else, there is a right and wrong way to go about applying a splint.

When you’re in a state of panic or shock from an injury that has either happened to you or to someone in front of you, it can be hard to think straight. When you’re rushing to administer the needed first aid, mistakes can happen when emotions are running high. If you ever have to administer a splint to yourself or someone else, the first thing to do is try your best to stay calm.

It is important to keep a cool head so you can work methodically, correctly, and quickly. Here are some other common splinting mistakes that could happen when applying a splint and how to avoid them:

  • Don’t Wrap It Too Tight – If you’re applying a splint with a bandage or using a device like a sugar tong splint, the key point to remember is to not bandage or wrap the area too tightly. Yes, you are trying to immobilize the area as much as possible, but you don’t want to wrap the limb so tight you’re cutting off the blood circulation to the area. A good rule of thumb to remember is that you should still be able to fit one finger between the splint and the limb. That’s how you know you’ve wrapped it just right.
  • Splint a Larger Area – The idea of a splint is to minimize movement to an injured extremity. This means that where possible, you should splint a larger area and not just the affected area alone. For example, if you experience an injury on your elbow, this means that your wrist and shoulders should be immobilized too. Immobilizing the adjacent joints will protect your injured area much better by acting as the additional support that your limb needs.
  • It Should Be Easy to Remove – A splint should be quick and easy to remove when needed. If you have made the splint impenetrable or too difficult to remove, then the splint isn’t fitted on correctly. A splint should be quick and easy to remove just in case, remember that a splint is just there to minimize movement without being too restrictive.

Once you have applied your splint, it is important to keep checking on the limb until medical help has arrived. Every several minutes or so, check the splinted area to make sure you can still feel a strong pulse. You should also check the area to make sure it hasn’t turned white.

If you pressed or squeezed a toenail or fingernail (depending where your injury is), the colour should quickly return to the area once you have released the squeeze. Squeeze for a few seconds until the fingernail or toenail turns white, and then release it. The blood should return to your nails within a second or two. If it doesn’t, then you’ve wrapped the splint too tight.

In the case of wrist or forearm injuries, a sugar tong splint is a quick and easy solution. For more information about SAM Sugar Tong Splints, visit

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