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Finger Dislocations: What to Do and How to Treat

Finger dislocations occur when the bones in the finger joint are forced out of their normal position. This can happen due to a variety of causes, including sports injuries, falls, and accidents. Finger dislocations can be painful and can affect daily activities such as gripping and grasping objects. Here's what you need to know about finger dislocations, their symptoms, and how they can be treated.

Causes of Finger Dislocations

Finger dislocations can occur due to a sudden impact or force to the hand, such as during a sports activity or a fall. They can also occur due to overuse or repetitive motion, particularly in activities that involve gripping or grasping objects. People who have conditions such as arthritis or hypermobility syndrome may be more prone to finger dislocations.

Symptoms of Finger Dislocations

The symptoms of a finger dislocation can vary depending on the severity of the injury. Common symptoms include:

  1. Pain and swelling around the affected finger joint
  2. Limited range of motion in the affected finger
  3. Deformity or abnormal appearance of the affected finger joint
  4. Numbness or tingling in the affected finger

In some cases, a finger dislocation can also cause damage to the surrounding ligaments, tendons, or nerves.

Treatment for Finger Dislocations

If you suspect that you have a finger dislocation, it's important to seek medical attention right away. Treatment for a finger dislocation typically involves reducing the dislocation and immobilizing the affected finger joint. This can be done by a medical professional, who may apply a splint, cast, or tape to the affected finger to keep it in place.

After the finger has been immobilized, a physical therapist may prescribe exercises and stretches to help improve the range of motion and strength in the affected finger joint. In some cases, surgery may be necessary to repair the damage caused by the dislocation.

Prevention of Finger Dislocations

While finger dislocations can be difficult to prevent, there are some steps you can take to reduce your risk of injury. These include:

  1. Wearing protective gear during sports activities
  2. Taking regular breaks during repetitive activities that involve gripping or grasping objects
  3. Maintaining strong and flexible muscles in the hands and fingers through exercise and stretching
  4. Using proper technique when lifting heavy objects or performing manual labor

Overall, finger dislocations can be painful and can affect daily activities. Seeking prompt medical attention and following a treatment plan can help reduce pain and improve function in the affected finger joint.

Cassie Whittaker Cassie is the Communications Coordinator for Elite Sports Medicine + Orthopedics. She has been writing and reviewing medical content since 2020. https://www.linkedin.com/in/cassie-whittaker-802a3b173

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