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redstripe11's avatar

How do I remove a massive splinter wedged under my fingernail? OUCH!

Asked by redstripe11 (142 points ) April 28th, 2009

So I managed to get a 1/4” wood splinter jammed under my right middle fingernail. I have cut the nail down as far as I can without making me whimper like an infant. Still, the splinter is barely exposed and I cannot get at it with tweezers. It really hurts and I am considering sawing my finger off, but I figured I would consult the good folks at fluther first. If I don’t get anywhere, I will post the question “how do I painlessly saw my finger off?”

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16 Answers

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Likeradar's avatar

Owch!!!
I was going to suggest soaking your finger in warm saltwater since it works for splinters that aren’t under the nail.
I found this- http://www.wikihow.com/Remove-a-Splinter-Under-Your-Fingernail
Good luck!!!

@dragonface way to be nowhere near helpful.

redstripe11's avatar

I tried the hammer thing but my finger won’t swell enough….of course i used my son’s toy plastic fisher price hammer…

On the other hand, that’s a good link. I would love to avoid that co-pay!

Judi's avatar

Have you been to Guantanamo lately?

cak's avatar

@redstripe11 Is it out, yet? I have no advice, but I do hope it’s out or it’s out soon! Yeeeouch, it just sounds very painful.

evelyns_pet_zebra's avatar

The best way to remove your finger painlessly is to soak it in liquid nitrogen for a few seconds, then smack it on the edge of a table. it will shatter on impact. Splinter problem solved. :-)

Seriously though, the splinter will eventually work its way out. There are certain topical salves that are made to ‘draw out’ foreign objects in the skin. Check your local pharmacy for products known as ‘drawing salves.’ Meanwhile, take something for the pain and good luck to you.

Judi's avatar

You could maybe soak it in hydrogen peroxide for a while too.

jca's avatar

put it in hydrogen peroxide because the splinter is causing an infection and you can utilize the pus to help push it out. soak it in warm water. keep doing the above one after the other and it should come out asap, maybe within a week.

RocketGuy's avatar

See a Dr. – he/she can shoot in some novocaine then dig it out in 5 min.

richardhenry's avatar

I’ve been in this unfortunate situation. Go see your doctor; they’ll shoot your finger up with a local anaesthetic, and then pull it out using some weird looking pliers.

If you’re going to do this yourself, you need to make sure nothing gets left behind. It’ll cause an infection and you might end up losing the nail.

jbfletcherfan's avatar

The salve mentioned above…buy some Epsal. It’s epsom salt salve & it’ll draw it out. I’d put it on at night & cover it with a band-aid before you go to bed. It may take 2–3 nights, but it’ll draw it out enough that you can get ahold of it with the tweezers. Good luck with it. That’s GOT to be miserable.

Judi's avatar

I think you ne4ed to upload a pic to flickr or photobucket so we can get a good look. :-)

redstripe11's avatar

Problem solved. I caved in and went to the Urgent Care Center. They numbed it up and pulled the thing out. I don’t think it was going to come out any other way, and the idea of an infected middle finger would greatly affect my communication skills.

Thanks for the help everybody. If it ever happens again, i’ll try the liquid nitrogen thing.

jbfletcherfan's avatar

@redstripe11 Oooh, that makes my butt pucker! That must have hurt like a big dog. Bless you…I’m glad it’s out, tho.

lilli1234123's avatar

I just finished taking out a wooden splinter from under my thumb nail nearly down to my cuticle. I filed the top of the nail down to the splinter and then lifted the splinter up and away from the nail bed in one piece. After, I used Band-aid Brand HURT-FREEĀ® Antiseptic Wash and have no pain what so ever.

redstripe11's avatar

Yeah, it’s a relief getting those things out. Once they are out it really doesn’t hurt, but the before and during is definitely below average.

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