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How to treat a jammed thumb

A jammed thumb or as some people call it-mallet, baseball finger or a skier’s thumb happens when the tip gets squashed by or against something. A lot of people get it jammed while doing sports when they hit someone or something, typically a ball or when they fall. The stretched ligament, typically the collateral ligament, or a broken bone are an often reason why this injury is so painful.  It typically gets red, enlarged and it hurts while moving.  

When you want to treat your injury you should first see how badly it is injured by trying to move the thumb. If it’s too painful to even think of moving it, it usually means that it is broken; otherwise it is only twisted a little bit. However, in both cases you should take care of your injury. The therapy for a strained thumb is to take an ice cube and  put it in a cotton cloth and  massage it tenderly on the injury. If not you can also put the cloth into icy water and apply it on the finger. You should treat the injury for 10 to 15 minutes until the pan eases a little bit. Subsequently, you can wrap your thumb in a bandage or a splint to stop it from becoming worse. Some people also take pain killers to lessen the pain.

 If all of these abovementioned don’t work you should go to the doctor’s as soon as possible. He or she will take an X-ray to make sure whether the bone is really broken or not. The doctors typically use bandages or splints to make sure so that the ligament heals properly or that is  in other words, stays in the right place. This is extremely important if the collateral ligaments are torn apart. In the worst case, the ulnar collateral ligament is entirely broken, the doctor needs to suck its end behind a tendon and it requires surgery. Luckily, this rarely happens.

Typically, jammed thumb injuries heal by itself after a while, unless the bone breaks or if it dislocates. Only in these two cases the treatment requires the doctor’s assistance and it requires several months in order for it to recover completely. Although, typically, it can recover without anyone’s help, exercises often quicken the healing period. However, you should consult an expert before you start doing that. The doctor can recommend you to  someone with enough experience. The healing period usually lasts from one to two months, but it may differ due to the seriousness of the injury. If you stick to the nutrition carefully you should heal fine. Moreover, the nutrition during the curative period is very important. Eat healthy to help your body recover.

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