In times of catastrophes, especially in a post-collapse scenario, professional medical care is not readily accessible. Do you even know how to bandage a cut finger? Things as basic as this question may save your life in the long run. Even without the thought of a post-apocalyptic scenario, it is advisable and practical to know about the treatment of basic injuries.
Your hands are the primary versatile tools you use at all times. They handle nearly every single task that you have to do every day. Thus, in the most challenging times, your hands are your only companion. Cuts are bound to happen. Do you know how to bandage a cut finger? If not, read on.
How to Bandage a Cut Finger
There are specific questions you need to ask yourself before applying the bandage: Should I leave the wound covered or uncovered? Do fresh wounds need air? First off, covered wounds heal faster than ones exposed to air. Covered injuries pave the way to faster tissue growth due to less exposure from moisture.
Also, covering your wounds reduce contamination. This way, you can expedite the healing of your injuries by not adding more problems to the fresh cut. On the flip side of the coin, airing out a wound can be effective, too, if it gets too wet. Once you change the dressing and notice that it absorbed some rain or shower water, let the wound air dry a little. Then, you can apply a new bandage to the same.
How Tight Should the Bandage Be?
Your body wants to heal, and the ultimate goal is to let that happen. After the injury, in its first few minutes, your body attempts to reduce the bleeding through clotting. This is, in a way, similar to plugging holes, but only through the convergence of fibrous cells and platelets.
After a few hours, your body starts sending in constructive elements to lay down the framework for new tissues. Defensive cells are also sent to fight off infections. All of these processes stop or slow down when you wrap the bandage or dressing very tightly. Thus, do not impede the construction of new tissues by doing so.
Types of Dressings
Band-aids are always the perfect cover-up for small wounds. Specific bandages work their way around toes, fingers, and knuckles. Before treating your injury, it is a must that you consider the location and size of your wound. Here are some of the types of dressings that will help you in learning how to bandage a cut finger.
Non-adherent Pads (Telfa)
Non-adherent pads are made for wounds that have light drainage. They are also suitable for most injuries since they have a cotton core in a non-stick coating. This is to let the wound breathe and so that the cotton can absorb the fluid well. They are flexible for cutting to fit in awkward areas.
Wet dressings conform to contours and always keep the wound moist. Moreover, these do not stick to injuries due to the petroleum-jelly like substance on it. You can make your own by spreading petroleum jelly on a gauze pad.
These are customized for dry or dehydrated abrasions and wounds. Its purpose is to transfer such moisture to the latter. You cannot use this dressing for moist wounds or those that are showing signs of fluid discharge.
Hydrocolloid dressings are longer lasting than the other kinds. They are also very flexible since you can just easily mold them even around body parts that involve lots of motion. They act as barriers against bacteria and contamination. You can barely see the wound, though, so checking it might be a challenge.
These dressings are typically used in hospitals to secure IVs. They are not that great in absorbing wound discharge, but they are perfect for IV purposes. You do not want to use this for an open wound, particularly on one that is moist.
This is a popular staple and an economical option for the masses. It is easy to find, cheap, with a simple application. However, since it is 100% made of cotton, it will undoubtedly stick to the wound if used dry.
What if My Dressing is Soaked With Pus, Blood, or Other Kinds of Fluid?
You can easily spot a saturated dressing. For sure, if your wound was moist, to begin with, you will also expect a little spotting. However, anything more is a sign that you should troubleshoot or replace the dressing altogether.
Dressings cannot absorb lots of blood, so the blood must be taken care of before you even apply the bandage. Adding clean dressing on top of a soaked dressing is a disproven teaching. You should always change your bandage when it is soaked with blood or when you deem necessary.
If you see pus on the bandage, especially if the discharge looks somewhat colorful, then you also need to re-apply new dressing. However, after you remove the soaked gauze and before applying a new one, clean the wound first. This is so that the injury will not get infected further due to the trapped pus therein.
It is good to know how to bandage a cut finger, especially during catastrophic events, when there are no clinics or medical practitioners around. Also, it is easy to dress your wound once you know the types of dressings and when to replace them. It is not rocket science. Keep in mind that the type of bandage you should use depends on the size and moisture of the wound you acquired. For further knowledge on the matter, it is recommended that you watch self-help videos and other first-aid materials online. Know more about first aid.