Useful Tips

How to get a splinter from under the nail: simple and effective methods


A splinter is called any foreign body that can penetrate the skin, including under the nail, through negligence. It must be removed immediately, and its location should be disinfected, otherwise there is a risk of purulent inflammation. There is a certain algorithm for how to pull a splinter from under the nail so that it comes out completely without leaving small fragments. The procedure can be painful, but it is necessary to avoid dangerous consequences.

First aid for splinter

Before suppuration, about 4-5 hours will pass.

During this time, it is advisable to have time to remove the splinter, and then treat the place of its entry with an antiseptic. So that it does not penetrate deep under the nail, you can stick a finger with adhesive tape. It is better to choose plasters with an antibacterial component - they will help to avoid the purulent microflora. Then you need to find the tools and completely remove the foreign body from under the nail plate.

A splinter under the nail can be of different origins:

  • wood chips
  • needles, thorns or other fragments of plants,
  • small bones (mainly fish),
  • glass wool or broken glass
  • metal parts or shavings.

The most dangerous foreign bodies are wooden. They crumble easily, and when you try to remove them, small fragments can remain under the nail plate. In addition, the tree quickly lends itself to the processes of decay and decay. It is also dangerous to get fish bones - they can be a source of bacteria and cause purulent inflammation.

Common mistakes

If a splinter gets under the nail, do not try to get it right away, without the help of tools.

If it is small, then all efforts will not bring results, and the splinter will be deep under the nail plate. In a hurry, there is a risk of making one of the most common mistakes:

  • when removing the splinter with fingers (without tweezers), it is often not possible to capture its edge, and it moves under the nail,
  • the tools are poorly processed and the bacteria remain in the wound, causing purulent inflammation,
  • if the skin is not steamed before removal of the foreign body, the splinter may break, and the fragments will remain under the nail plate,
  • Attempts to pry a splinter with a needle also often lead to its breaking.

The worst mistake is trying to get a splinter with your fingers without first processing them.

Even if it can be removed completely, bacteria will remain at its location. It should be understood that under the nail, the wound heals under anaerobic conditions, that is, without oxygen, which allows many dangerous microorganisms to grow and multiply.

Possible complications

The most dangerous complication that a splinter under the nail can lead to is seeding with bacterial microflora. The infection multiplies rapidly in the wound, and there is no way to wash the wound, since it is covered with a nail plate. The finger becomes inflamed, blushes, increases in size. This condition is dangerous to health, since purulent fusion of tissues occurs.

If you do not seek medical help on time, there is a risk that you may need to completely remove the nail plate.

Foreign body removal technique

To remove splinters from under the nail, you need ordinary tweezers. It is better if it has thin tips, and metal is the best material. It is recommended to boil the tweezers before the procedure in water for sterilization. Then you can wipe it and hands with alcohol (vodka). A needle may also come in handy for retrieving deep splinters. It is treated in the same way. For work, it is better to use a magnifying glass.

The procedure is carried out in several stages:

  • on the finger it is better to cut the nail shortly if the end of the foreign body does not protrude above the surface of the skin,
  • so that the foreign body does not break, it is recommended to steam your hand in hot water with the addition of soda and salt,
  • using a magnifying glass, a splinter is picked up with tweezers and removed from under the nail,
  • the finger should be treated with hydrogen peroxide or alcohol, and use a patch before healing the wound.

After removing the splinter, you need to make sure that its fragments do not remain under the nail. For this, a magnifying glass and good lighting will come in handy again. You can also press on the nail - if this causes sharp pain and discomfort, this may mean that a small part of the splinter remains. You can’t pull it out on your own, in which case it’s easier to see a doctor.

Folk methods

In the arsenal of folk remedies there are recipes that will help soften the skin and contribute to the fact that the splinter will come to the surface on its own. If you can’t get it with tweezers, you should try one of the following methods:

  • baths with salt and soda (in equal proportions, the water should acquire a cloudy white hue) - the hand is dipped in hot water and held until it cools, then the procedure is repeated until the splinter can be removed,
  • white clay in the powder is poured with water and applied to the finger, fixing with a bandage, the dressing is changed every 30-60 minutes,
  • Laundry soap is rubbed into a container with hot water, mixed to a homogeneous consistency, then the finger is steamed in such a bath.

A similar effect is also exerted by some pharmacy products. Vishnevsky ointment is the best way to extract a deep splinter along with purulent exudate, if present. The ointment is applied in the form of compresses that can be left on all day or at night.

To remove a splinter from under the nail, you need to carefully so that it comes out completely, and its small fragments do not remain under the nail plate.

It will be easier to remove it if the skin of the hands is well steamed in a warm bath. After the procedure, to disinfect the wound, you need to treat it with an antiseptic solution, and apply a bandage on top or use an adhesive plaster.

How to get a splinter from under the nail: the most effective way

If you decide to remove the foreign body yourself, it is better not to try to do this with your fingers and nails. It’s much easier, faster and more efficient to use ordinary tweezers.

How to get a splinter from under the nail:

  1. Before carrying out the procedure, be sure to wash your hands with soap!
  2. Sterilize the instrument - you can use both cool boiling water and an alcohol-containing product for this.
  3. In addition, wash the area around the splinter with soap and water. Disinfect the area with an alcohol-based product.
  4. If the damaged nail is long, then cut it with scissors - this will greatly facilitate the procedure for removing the splinter from under the nail plate.
  5. Place your damaged finger under the light fixture or sit in a bright room - you should clearly see the splinter.
  6. Gently hold the protruding edge with tweezers.
  7. Pull out the foreign body in the direction in which it entered under the nail.

If, when trying to remove the splinter, it broke off (part of it remained under the nail), split, then this is an occasion to contact a specialist.

Needle removal

It is not always possible to pick up a foreign body with tweezers. How to get a splinter from under the nail, if it is deep? Use a regular sewing needle:

  1. Wash your hands with soap.
  2. Sterilize the needle with boiling water or alcohol.
  3. Rinse and disinfect the damaged finger.
  4. Settle down for the procedure in a well-lit area.
  5. Carefully bring the tip of the needle under the nail in the direction of the splinter.
  6. Once you have reached the near edge of the foreign body, your task is to carefully pick it up with a needle and move it closer to the outer edge of the nail plate.
  7. Bring the splinter with a needle to the distance from which it can be removed with tweezers.
  8. Disinfect the tweezers and remove the splinter.

Baking Soda Extract

A splinter got under the nail - how to get it? If the foreign object is too small to hook it with a needle, tweezers, or has gone too far under the nail plate, try this simple method:

  1. Stir one tablespoon of ordinary baking soda in warm boiled water.
  2. Soak a damaged finger in such a bath twice a day.
  3. Procedures should be repeated periodically for several days. As a result, the splinter should go to the surface of the skin, from where it will simply be removed with the same tweezers. In some cases, it falls out by itself.

There is another way where baking soda is involved. Then paste is made from powder:

  1. Shorten a damaged nail to provide access to a foreign body.
  2. Dilute a quarter of a tablespoon of baking soda with a few drops of boiled or drinking water so that you have a thick paste, paste.
  3. Apply the product to the damaged area, and wrap the finger over the top with a sterilized bandage.
  4. After a day, remove the bandage, inspect the damaged area.
  5. Under the influence of the paste, the splinter most often comes out by itself. If this does not happen, then similarly prepare a new portion of the product. Tie your finger again for 24 hours.

Extraction using tape

How to get a splinter from under the nail of a child? It is necessary to do this unusually and quickly so that the little patient does not have time to get scared and does not prevent the adult from performing the procedure. However, this method is good for small splinters, whose edge protrudes above the surface of the skin:

  1. Shorten the baby's fingernail to provide access to the foreign body.
  2. Take a transparent adhesive tape - under it will be clearly visible splinter.
  3. Press the adhesive tape against the foreign body.
  4. Pull it sharply on yourself - a glued splinter as a result of this action will break out from under the nail.

Depilatory Wax Extraction

Another unusual way that will help to remove small splinters from under the nail plate that are difficult to grab with a needle or tweezers:

  1. Shorten the nail near the damaged area to make the procedure easier.
  2. Preheat the wax, then apply it to the damaged area - the substance must necessarily cover the protruding edge of the splinter.
  3. Apply a thin strip of cloth or bandage to wax that has not yet set.
  4. As soon as the substance hardens, pull the edge of the glued fabric strip. Along with the wax, the splinter adhered to it should also move away.

Extraction using Vishnevsky

How to get a splinter from under the nail, if it is deep? Vishnevsky ointment here is the simplest painless way. It is used, in particular, for small patients. The procedure is as follows:

  1. Shorten the damaged nail.
  2. Apply a little ointment directly to the area where the splinter penetrated.
  3. Wrap the damaged finger carefully with a bandage - the ointment emits an unpleasant odor, leaves spots on clothes, bedding.
  4. After 24 hours, remove the bandage - the splinter under the action of Vishnevsky’s agent should come to the surface itself.
  5. If the foreign body remains under the nail, repeat the procedure again - a daily dressing with Vishnevsky ointment.
  6. If the splinter does not come out completely, but its edge appears above the surface of the skin, then carefully pull it out with sterilized tweezers.

Popular methods for the extraction of splinter

Before using any of the following methods, we advise you to pre-wash the wound with soap and disinfect it with an alcohol-containing preparation:

  • Compress from comfrey or fenugreek root. The ingredient ground to a powder state is poured with boiling water. The resulting mass is applied to the damaged area - the dressing is changed every 4 hours.
  • Onion gruel. Grind the product on a grater, attach the pulp to the wound. Change the compress to fresh every 3 hours.
  • White cabbage. The cabbage leaf is grated into gruel. The latter is applied to the wound. Every 3 hours, this compress should be changed to fresh.
  • Processing the wound with vodka, juniper resin, tar also helps soften the skin around the splinter, which contributes to the independent exit of a foreign body.
  • For the same purpose, warm baths are made from baby soap (5 tablespoons of shavings from a soap bar). The damaged finger is kept in water until it cools. Continue the procedure until the splinter.

After extraction

You know how to get a splinter out of your finger. Once you have succeeded, be sure to do the following:

  1. Wash the wound with soap from which the foreign body was taken out.
  2. To prevent infection from getting into it, treat the area with iodine, brilliant green or an antibiotic ointment.
  3. When extraction began bleeding? Need treatment with hydrogen peroxide. After the blood stops, disinfect the wound and bandage your finger with a sterile bandage.

Need medical help!

How to get a splinter from under the nail? Sometimes this problem can only be solved by a specialist. These are cases when a foreign body has gone too deep under the nail plate, and an infection has been brought along with it. This can be determined by several signs:

  • A splinter causes heavy bleeding.
  • You cannot get to a foreign body on your own (you already know how to get a splinter from under the nail). Here you will need a local anesthetic, which will help to remove the splinter painlessly.
  • The area around the foreign body is swollen, reddened, you feel pain when touched, pressed. Most likely, the infection is brought. You will be prescribed antibiotics to rule out the development of serious consequences.

You now know the ways that will help to remove the splinter on your own - both small and deep inside the skin, both for an adult and a child.

Symptoms of Splinter

  • Foreign object under the nail plategenerally oblong
  • Painful sensations under the nail
  • Throbbing and twitching under the nail plate
  • Temperature change the nail (hotter than the rest)

These symptoms will help you recognize a splinter when it is not visually visible, for example due to nail polish or an extended manicure. When a problem has arisen, you cannot start the process, so you have to take measures to make the splinter visible: at least erase the varnish, otherwise it will be difficult to remove.

A flashlight from the phone will help you to see an invisible splinter: you need to turn it on and attach it to the finger from the back.

See how this is done:

The importance of timely splinter removal

Why is it important to pull the splinter as soon as possible? The fact is that in the piece of material that fell under the nail (metal, wood, a piece of paint or another), there must have been a lot of bacteria. As a result of this, at the place of penetration of even the smallest splinter inflammation occurs, and in some cases, blood poisoning may occur.

If you feel that the pain intensifies, if numbness or inflammation develops, the finger begins to swell - a foreign object must be urgently removed.

A particularly dangerous symptom is if you notice a beginning suppuration, with which the general body temperature rises.

What threatens to ignore splinters

If the splinter, which is still under the nail and causing trouble, remains uncured for several days, the situation may turn around irreparable consequences:

Toe Gangrene

  • Nail loss without hope of its restoration
  • Blood poisoning
  • Soft tissue mortification
  • Development tetanus
  • As a result of the occurrence of gangrene - finger amputation or arms / legs
  • Under adverse circumstances, possible death

Therefore, the extraction of splinter must be given due attention, be sure to observe the rules of antiseptics.

Preparatory stage

To get a splinter from under the nail, especially at home, you need to use sterile tools. It is important not to break the splinter, not to force it to pierce the skin even deeper.

Cook necessary facilities and tools:

  1. a disinfectant (if it is not available, then fire will be needed),
  2. cotton or bandage,
  3. tweezers or manicure tweezers, a needle (sewing or medical) or manicure scissors with very thin and sharp ends,
  4. patch,
  5. magnifying glass.

Just in case, have ammonia on hand.

Splinter recovery preparation

The first thing to do is sanitize tools any antiseptic, or handle fire, igniting them. Carefully wash your hands. Cut a nail, which hit a splinter. Cut so as not to cut the splinter, it may be possible to free its protruding edge. Injured finger A couple of minutes hold in a disinfectant.

Method for removing splinter

If by the time you decide to remove a foreign object, the pain in your finger has already reached considerable strength, then use cream or spray with anesthetic effect. Note that after applying the anesthetic, you need to wait a few minutes until it works. Provide yourself good visibility, turn on the bright light. Then get down to action:

  1. Spread your finger in hot water with soda or laundry soap.
  2. Pick up the edge of the splinter with tweezersif this succeeds, most likely you can remove the splinter without any problems.
  3. When, if the edge of the splinter is hidden far from a cut of the nail, you have to act with a needle: bring the needle closer to the splinter, pick her up, like a crochet, pressing to the nail from below, and pull to the exit.

A splinter sits very deep

If the above actions were unsuccessful or the splinter is so small that it cannot be seen, because it has penetrated deep into the skin, then use one of the following methods:

A splinter deep under the nail

  • Pharmacy ichthyol ointment can help to get a splinter if you wrap it with your finger for a couple of hours.
  • Vishnevsky ointment effectively help to "stretch" stuck splinter. In addition, it disinfects and eliminates the purulent process that has begun. Make a compress of Vishnevsky ointment for the night.
  • Warm vegetable oil help a splinter “emerge” from a finger. To do this, hold your finger in warmed oil for about 10 minutes.

A few more ways to extract a deep splinter are presented in this video:

A splinter in a child

If your baby is afraid of needles or other tools, you can try distract his attention and a quick, confident action to get a splinter.

Or, after steaming, gently wipe the baby’s finger from moisture and resort to the use of a patch. Glue it to the splinter, then remove it carefully. The edge of the splinter will stick to the patch and be removed.

Quickly and without a needle, cleaning masks, films or wax for depilation can be applied, applied to the problem area, and then removed after solidification.

How to pull a splinter as painlessly as possible

The only way to pull a splinter without any pain is to use skin painkillers. Among them Liracaine, which is made on the basis of a gel and easily penetrates under the nail.

Gel SustaininDesigned for pain relief during tattooing, it can also help in removing splinters. Another powerful tool is SuperTrio - A special tool for the anesthesia of unpleasant cosmetic procedures. There are many other tools that are available on the pharmacy network.

Post-Nail Care

After successful removal of the splinter disinfect your finger, apply a bandage with soothing ointment. Try to keep your hands clean Before healing, pay special attention to the care of a damaged finger to preserve the beauty and health of the nail.

If after removing the foreign body, you didn't stop tormenting the pain and other unpleasant symptoms consult a surgeon. Perhaps the splinter was not completely removed, or it managed to cause significant harm to health.

Tips on how to remove the splinter competently and how to make the necessary processing will allow you not to get confused if such a problem catches up with you or your friends. Having the appropriate knowledge, you can help not only yourself, but also those around you.