Tips And Treats
Strain, Sprain, Fracture And Dislocation Tips
A STRAIN is an injury caused by over stretching a muscle. A SPRAIN is an injury to the ligament, tendons or soft tissues around a joint. A FRACTURE is a broken bone. A DISLOCATION occurs when one end of a bone is pulled or pushed out of its normal position.
Last Updated - 31st October 2005
- Make sure you can always see where you are going.
- Do not carry objects that are too heavy.
- Use a step stool to reach objects that are above your head.
- Do not stand on chairs, countertops or unstable objects.
- Train properly for activities.
- Wear protective gear.
- Use equipment that is in good condition.
- Keep toddlers away from objects that may cause injuries if the child falls on them (coffee tables, stairs, fireplaces, etc.) Whether the injury affects soft tissue or bone, the basic treatment is the same:
RICE - RICE stands for rest, ice, compression and elevation.
- Do not put weight on the injured joint for at least 24 to 48 hours. - Use crutches to support a badly sprained knee or ankle.
- Support a sprained wrist, elbow or shoulder with a sling, which will help the injury heal faster.
- Rest a sprained finger or toe by taping it to the healthy finger next to it. Always place padding between the two fingers or toes you are taping together.
- Apply ice or cold packs immediately to prevent or minimize swelling.
- Do not use heat. It may feel nice but does more harm than good if applied too soon (less than 72 hours) after an injury.
- Wrap the injured area with an elastic bandage or compression sleeve to immobilize and compress the sprain.
- Do not wrap tightly.
- Loosen bandage if it gets too tight.
- Elevate the injured area on pillows while you apply ice and anytime you are sitting or lying down.
- Try to keep the injury at or above the level of your heart to help minimize swelling.
- SPLINTING immobilizes a limb that you suspect is fractured to prevent further injury. There are two ways to immobilize a limb until you can seek medical help. You can tie a stiff object to the injured limb or fasten the limb to some other part of the body.
- Tie rolled-up newspapers or magazines, a stick, a cane or anything that is stiff to the injured limb with a rope, a belt or anything else that will work. Do not tie too tight.
- Position the splint so the injured limb cannot bend by splinting from a joint above the suspected fracture to a joint below it.
- You can immobilize an injured arm by tying it across the victim's chest.
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