A dislocated finger is a common injury among athletes. The fingers become dislocated when the bones are moved from the usual position, but a finger can become dislocated at any point and happens in the knuckle found in the middle of the finger.
Dislocated fingers can be a result of accidents like a person may fall and attempts to break the fall with an outstretched hand. Players of basketball experience dislocated fingers if the ball hits them in their fingertip when trying to catch or rebound it. Baseball players sustain dislocated fingers when the baseball hits them on exposed fingertips. As for football players who make tackles are at high risk of dislocated fingers because the fingers can be bent in an awkward manner or be caught in a pad or jersey.
Pain is the initial symptom of a dislocated finger. The finger may look crooked along with swelling and it can be bent at an odd angle or straight up. A severe dislocated finger causes numbness or tingling sensations and the fingers becomes pale. A dislocated finger that breaks through the skin will require an immediate medical attention. If you want to properly manage this injury, read here.
Treatment of a dislocated finger
- Watch for symptoms of swelling or joint pain immediately after the accident
- Separate the area and prevent additional movement by using splints that can be made out of newspapers, magazines, sticks or anything on hand. Do not try to realign the bones by yourself since this can cause further injury to the affected area.
- Apply ice compress to the affected area immediately and elevate the affected area in order to reduce swelling and pain.
- Take acetaminophen or ibuprofen for pain relief
- Seek the help of a physical therapist regarding range-of-motion exercises in order to restore the range of movement and the strength.
- Avoid eating foods or drinking fluids before the treatment in order to prevent aspiration of foods or liquids into the lungs when the person is sedated.
Exercise for a dislocated finger
- Stand over a table or against a wall with the palm facing downward and fingers spread. Press the hand against the flat surface and hold for five seconds. Repeat the procedure for ten times for a single set at least three times a day.
- Curl the fingers into the palm of the hand to make a fist. If the dislocated finger cannot move, utilize the unaffected finger when moving the dislocated finger to make a fist. Hold the fist position for five seconds and repeat the procedure ten times for a single set at least three times a day.
- Wrap the fingers around the sides of a tennis ball and then squeeze the ball with the hand and fingers as hard as the person can squeeze for five seconds then relax the hand. Repeat the procedure ten times for a single set at least three times a day.