What you need to know about splints

Splints are commonly used medical equipment that is utilized in keeping an injured limb from moving as well as protects it from further damage. Splints are used to steady an injured bone while the individual is brought to the emergency department to receive treatment. In some cases, it can also be used for individuals who have a severe sprain or strain in one of the limbs. Once a splint is properly applied, it can help ease the pain by ensuring that the affected part is not moved. In case of injuries at home or during sports, a temporary splint can be made.


A splint is easily made by using materials readily found at home.

How to make a splint

Initially, when making a splint, you need something that is strong and could not easily bend since it will help stabilize the fracture. If you will look around at home or office, you can find many options to use such as a plank, board, rolled-up newspapers, heavy stick or even a rolled-up towel. In case you are going to use something that have pointed edges or can cause splinters such as wooden stick, make sure that you will wrap it with a cloth.

You also need to fasten the splint in place by using ropes, belts, shoe laces or pieces of cloth. If medical tape is available, you can use it to fasten the splint. Just avoid using duct tape or any commercial tape directly on the skin.

How to apply a splint

If there is bleeding, you have to control it first by applying direct pressure on the wound. Apply a bandage, piece of cloth or gauze. Avoid moving the affected body part to be splinted since you might cause further damage.

Apply the splint so that it will rest on the joint higher than the injury and the joint beneath it. If the forearm is affected, simply position the support beneath the forearm and secure it to the arm below the wrist and above the elbow. Do not fasten the support directly on the affected area. Make sure that you will fasten the splint in a secure manner to hold the body part still, but not too tight that it will disrupt the circulation.

Upon the application of the splint, you have to check the surrounding areas every now and then for signs of diminished circulation. In case the affected limb is swollen, pale or bluish in color, you have to loosen the ties.

In case an individual is suffering from shock, you have to initially position him/her in a lying position. If possible, you have to elevate the legs while the head must be positioned slightly below the level of the heart. Once the splint is applied, call for emergency assistance or take him/her directly to the nearest emergency department so that further treatment can be provided.


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