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A splint is a rigid device that is used to support an injured body part. Splints are usually used for a short time, to prevent movement until more definitive medical treatment can be given.


What are the causes and risks of the injury?

A splint can be used for many different injuries, including the following:
  • bone fracture
  • joint injury
  • sprains or strains
More information is available in the articles dealing with these specific injuries.


What can be done to prevent the injury?

Sports safety guidelines should be followed by adults, adolescents, and children.


How is the injury recognized?

The individual will generally have pain, swelling, and limited movement of the injured body part.


What are the treatments for the injury?

A splint is a first aid, short-term treatment for an injured body part. The following steps describe how to make a splint.
  • First, find something that is rigid, such as a piece of wood, a stick, or strong cardboard.
  • Place the solid object against the injured body part. Wrap tape around the rigid object and the body part to hold them together.
  • Attempt to splint injuries in the position in which they are found. Do not try to straighten them or realign any injured body part.
  • Extend the splint beyond the injured area. Try to prevent movement of the joints above and the joints below the injured area, if you can. Sometimes this will be impossible because of the location of the injury.
  • Once the splint has been secured, use devices such as belts or cloth strips to hold it in place. To avoid stopping blood flow, do not make knots and ties too tight.
  • Check often after the splint is in place to make sure that the blood flow is not cut off .

Side Effects

What are the side effects of the treatments?

First aid treatment with a splint seldom has side effects. If the splint is too tight, it may cause loss of blood flow to the area.

After Treatment

What happens after treatment for the injury?

After a splint has been applied, an individual should receive further care from a healthcare professional. He or she can recommend the appropriate treatment, which can include:
  • placing the injured limb in a more permanent splint
  • giving medication to reduce pain and swelling
  • giving further treatment for the specific injury

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