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Of all common injuries, finger cuts tend to be the most painful. Finger cuts pose major inconveniences both to adults and children, as well as potential complications. Proper wound care is essential to ensure speedy healing without infection or accidentally reopening the wound. If you want to know what to do when you cut your finger, keep reading!
Whether you’re accident-prone or simply a victim of poor luck, odds are that you’ve had some kind of finger scrape or cut. Here are some common causes of finger injuries:
These injuries can range in severity and should be treated accordingly, either at home or by a medical professional.
If you are cooking or going to work and feel that a finger cut may be imminent, it’s important to take the necessary precautions in order to protect your hands. Should your occupation involve handling heavy machinery or sharp objects that may result in a finger cut, try to wear gloves and follow all recommended safety precautions and regulations for the tools you are operating.
Ironically, the kitchen is the best place to be after accidentally cutting your finger. Immediately following the accident, calm yourself and inspect your injury. Even for the most shallow finger cut, heavy bleeding can occur. If the wound seems like a minor cut, wash your hands as soon as possible with soap and water at your kitchen sink. Afterward, you should allow blood to run freely for a few moments; this helps flush out any bacteria introduced to the bloodstream from the cooking knife. Then, stop the bleeding and apply pressure with a compress and dress it with a bandage. If you have to continue cooking, it is suggested that you cover the afflicted hand with a glove to protect it.
To avoid cutting your finger while cooking, it’s important to adhere to common-sense cooking rules. Take care when wielding a knife and keep an orderly kitchen. Without messes, pets, or children in your kitchen, accidents are less likely to occur.
If you were unfortunate enough to cut off a chunk or tip of your finger, you may have a far more serious problem on your hands. At the very least, the injury may require stitches and a tetanus shot to stop the infection from setting in. However, if you accidentally severed your finger partially or completely, then you are faced with a more difficult situation. First, you need to put pressure on the wound. Then find and wrap the severed appendage with moistened gauze in a watertight plastic bag and seal it. Afterward, place the bag on ice in a sealed container or another watertight bag before seeking emergency medical attention immediately. If you managed to have a clean-cut, a surgeon may be able to reattach the fingertip with a skin graft.
The aftermath of a finger cut dictates how fast and how well the wound will heal. If you have taken the appropriate steps in cleaning and dressing the wound, then odds are that you’re on the right track to a speedy recovery.
Most minor cuts can be treated at home, but if you notice that your finger is bleeding heavily for an extended period of time or is showing signs of infection like excessive redness and irritation, you should visit an urgent care or emergency room right away. The last thing you want is for infection to set in and cause complications.
At Village Emergency Centers, no injury is too small to warrant fast and effective emergency care. If you aren’t sure what to do when you cut your finger, visit a Village Emergency Center location near you. Our board-certified emergency doctors and staff are ready to help you with all your emergency needs with little to no wait time. Contact us today!