While it’s never convenient to break a bone, breaking your hand may be one of the most difficult injuries to cope with because we rely on our hands to do almost everything. If you break your hand, it’s important to seek medical attention right away because a broken hand can cause a lifelong disability. However, it can be difficult to tell the difference between a sprained hand and a fracture or break. Learn the warning signs of a broken hand, here:
Symptoms of a Broken Hand
A broken hand can exhibit many symptoms depending on the severity of the break. If you break your hand, you may experience any of these symptoms:
– Pain that increased while gripping or squeezing
– Swelling in the hand, wrist, or fingers
– Stiffness in the hand, wrist or fingers
Treatment for a Broken Hand
Treating a broken hand will vary on a case-by-case basis depending on the severity of the break, but these are possible treatments your doctor will recommend:
Rest: If your hand is broken, it’s important that you don’t move your hand frequently. If you do, you risk worsening the injury and causing permanent damage. Immobilizing the break will allow the hand to heal and speed up recovery time. Some doctors may recommend the hand be casted or splinted.
Pain Management: Your doctor may prescribe medication to reduce any pain you feel from a fracture or break. For minor pain, acetaminophen may be strong enough to reduce pain. However, severe pain may require stronger medication.
Physical Therapy: Once your splint or cast is off, you may experience pain, weakness or immobilization of your wrist. To ease these symptoms and regain strength, physical therapy may be necessary. Although physical therapy can be lengthy, it can greatly reduce stiffness and increase strength.
Surgery: In extreme cases, surgery may be the best course of action for a broken hand—especially if there are multiple fractures, loose bone fragments or ligament damage.
When to See a Physician
If you are experiencing any of the symptoms above, don’t hesitate to contact a physician. The experienced team at Coastal Orthopedics can treat a variety of orthopedic injuries, including injuries of the hand and wrist. We will examine your hand and determine the best treatment for you.