Monday, April 14, 2014

How to bandage a child's finger tip

Do you know how to bandage a child's finger especially it is a serious cut and it is at the tip of the finger? When little one gets hurt, I am sure parents will be lost, not knowing what to do, especially the cut is at such odd places, such as the finger tip.  I have learnt a trick or two and would like to share them with you.

Last week, we had quite an experience doing that. Little one's middle finger was being cut by a pair of scissors! I was not there when it happened. My caretaker took her to the A&E. As the fingertip was almost snip off, a mere plaster is not enough, it had to be bandaged. She was not to wet her finger for 3 days for fear of infection. No antiseptic cream or solution was given. No bandage was provided.

Look at her bandaged finger...
Little one and her injured finger (Background: The National Museum of  Singapore)
However, it is such a unfortunate incident that little one wet her finger while going to the toilet on the second day. :( I was flashing the toilet and forgot to remind her not to wash her hands. I was left with no choice but to take out the bandage and re-bandage it before the stated stipulated time. See below.

The cut
I had to pat dry with clean sterile non woven gauze and air dry. Since the bleeding already stopped, air drying is possible. I applied non adhesive gauze (but I do not know why it got stuck to her blood clot later since it is a jelonet paraffin graze) and add on a secondary dressing.

Tip 1: Removing gauze from the blood clot

The next day,  I realised *urrgghh*, the gauze can absorb much of her blood and got stuck to the wound. It was quite traumatic for little one as whenever I tried pulling lightly at the stuck gauze, she cries in pain! In the end, I consulted my dear friend for help.
"Soak the affected finger into boiled, warm water."
This I did. I tried to distract her by playing her favourite movie when doing it. Of course, she didn't want to do so. She finally agreed after much persuasion.
Before soaking, I had trim the gauze to almost the size of her fingertip. I soak for a minute or two, then using a tweezers to pull lightly at the stuck gauze. If it doesn't give way, soak it again. It works miraculously. Little one did not cry.

Tip 2. Applying adhesive bandage or plaster.
After her blood clots up finally which was 2 days after the above mentioned gauze incident, I apply normal plaster. I get those that are more than enough to cover her wound so that there is no way the adhesive part of the plaster would stick to the clot.

Below pictures showing the steps to do so.
Snip with a pair of sterile scissors ( I use alcohol wipe to clean) as shown on both end. Do not cut the cushion.

Apply bandage as shown. Fold the bandage to cover the wound, ensuring the cushion surrounds the wound properly.  Tape the other end of the plaster over the finger.

You will end up having this funny looking thing that looks like a finger puppet. Gently close the gap at the sides so that it is sealed up. You could leave it this as it is or use a white micropore tape to wrap around. I find them easier to take off than the brown ones. (sorry for the blur photo)

Do you have any other first aid tip or experience to share? 

I am wondering where to get individually packed non woven gauze because the one I have got is always in a pack of 5. It is such a waste to use only 2 or 3 pieces and I cannot use the  balance for first aid since they are not sterile any more.

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