Splinter or Sliver Removal. Remove painful slivers with less pain and damage.

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Splinter Removal or Sliver Removal

Splinters:-( those painful little pieces of wood and thorn that get stabbed into us and our kids any time we even touch a piece of wood.

When my kids were young.......I discovered that getting splinters or slivers out with a needle was not frugal emotionally, hurt a lot and often didn't work without major gouging and pain. Then I discovered #11 Exacto Knife blades (blades for the thick pencil sized hobby utility knife). These are the really sharp pointed blades that usually come with a new small Exacto Knife and can be bought separately. NOT a square ended razor blade. See the picture below.

FIRST, sterilize the blade before each use by holding it in the flame of a match or stove. LET IT COOL! The technique varies with each splinter, but use as little cutting and prying as possible. I still often have to cut the skin OVER the splinter. This is "dead" (to pain) skin at the surface and doesn't hurt to cut it to access the splinter. Then the splinter is exposed enough to "pry or lift" it out. DON'T get carried away "playing doctor", and really cut deep to get a splinter, don't slice into nerves. If it's worse than you'd have used a needle for and you can't get it out easily, SEE A DOCTOR.

When done, treat as you would any wound....antiseptic and sterile bandage. Also re-sterilize the blade before you put it away. It really does beat needles. Don't use the blade for anything else. We put ours in an recycled platic pill bottle.

TIP: keep one in the medicine cabinet, one in the kitchen and one in the garage/workshop. BTW (by the way) Sharon and I find it easier to handle the blade only. Don't put it in the knife handle as its added weight may cause you to go faster than you want. This is really a precision way to remove splinters. IN THE BEGINNING-----our kids were used to pain and removing slivers. So we'd have them NOT watch and then touch slightly away from the splinter and ask if that hurt. Of course since we weren't doing anything it didn't and they'd say, "NO" Then we'd say some like, "Ok I'm going to try harder to get it out tell me if it hurts, again touching around and not on the wound. Does it hurt yet? NO. Let me know if it does. Then we'd begin, slowly, in ernest to remove the sliver. Often they said it never hurt on really big splinters that were in deep. Child psychology lesson over.

Other tips we received on splinter removal were to numb the area before you start by rubbing ice on it. Use a white wood glue and pour a thin layer on the exposed splinter, let it dry and then peel off the glue and splinter with it. Another tip was to pull a piece of gauze across the skin surface to "catch" the splinter and pull it out. Pull the gauze quickly across the splinter. (ouch, that sounds like it hurts on a deep one).

You may want to get a jewelers loop (magnifying lense you hold to your eye with your eye muscles) or a magnifying glass to see better with.


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