A jammed finger can be a very annoying injury. The sheer variety of ways to acquire it is discouraging at best.
A jammed finger, strictly defined, represents a sprain of the joint capsule of the inter-phalangeal joints. In plain English, it means someone has injured his or her knuckles.
This sprain involves an injury to the ligaments. Every joint in an individual’s body is made out of ligaments and joint capsules, which serve as a merge points for bones. Finger joints falls under the same category.
The jammed finger happens when a certain amount of force hits the finger in an unexpected way, causing a shocking reaction and subsequent bruising. The force that hit the finger translates itself through the bones and into the joint. The ends of the phalanges usually get bruised at the knuckle. This, in turn, causes swellings and damages to the capsule.
Symptoms one should look for when dealing with a jammed finger are pain, numbness swelling, loss of motion and strength etc. Swellings are especially easy to notice since they tend to look unpleasant and last for months. There even exist cases where the swelling never completely wears off. Mobility of the sprained area usually returns fairly quickly.
Treating the pain is the first thing to do, as well as devoting attention to the swelling. R.I.C.E. principles are to be used as soon as possible after experiencing the injury. This will help in reducing the pain and discomfort. There may be a need to consult a doctor, depending on the severity of the sprain and the subsequent symptoms. An individual should contact his or her doctor if the injury left the finger violently bent. This is important so as to eliminate or establish the possibility of a fracture. An X-ray is a good way to tell which one it is.
If the fracture gets ruled out, treatment ensues. The goal is to improve and, eventually, completely recover the mobility and strengthen the affected finger. Ice should be applied and the area should be rested. After this phase is complete, the patient should start trying to bend and straighten the finger. This should be done cautiously and gradually.
A jammed finger is a common occurrence in sports. They are usually overlooked as insignificant, but if underestimated, they could lead to some serious discomfort. It never hurts to be sure, so home remedies are always advised, as they would likely accelerate the healing process.
One should not exclude the option of a fracture without solid proof. This is especially the case if the swelling and pain prove to be persistent. A quick pop to the doctor followed by an X-ray will shed some light on the matter. Fingers are important tools for humans and they should never be allowed to suffer needlessly.