Some people will go through life without knowing how it feels to break one of their bones, while others may not be as lucky. Various types of fractures aren’t equally severe though but they should still be cause for concern that warrants a doctor’s visit if necessary.
Depending on where in the body the fracture is located and how seriously the person has severed the specific bone, first responders and doctors will practice splinting to help the bones heal. Other ways of repairing the bone damage can include surgical pins that doctors will insert and fix onto the attached cast made out of plaster.
Still, splinting is the oldest and most reliable method of securing the fracture site and many medical professionals still depend on it today to heal bones effectively. Curious as to how splints help heal broken bones? Keep on reading to learn more.
Table of Contents
1. Splints Help Immobilize The Injury Site
Although the process may sound complicated, the best splint is one that lends support to the broken bones by immobilizing them as quickly as possible. There are easy-to-use splint products on the market that anyone can apply in 4 simple steps, even without medical training.
The ends are always likely to move over or damage the surrounding tissues and blood vessels with broken bones. Still, when the fractured ends are immobilized, it will prevent more internal injuries.
2. They Provide More Movement To Joints
Using other methods like casts or pins may temporarily or permanently cause the loss of use of a limb or two for the patient. With a splint, their chances of having stiff and sore joints are said to be less than other treatment methods while still providing adequate support to the broken bone.
Some patients may struggle with mobilizing their limbs properly after an accident but by granting the joints the freedom to move more, they don’t have such a hard time regaining full function after they’ve completely healed.
3. Splints Relieve Pressure From Swelling
Swelling is the body’s natural response to any injury. The injured site becomes red and warm because the swelling indicates that the body is hard at work repairing the damage from the inside.
Methods that are too restrictive could add extra pressure on the site, causing more pain and discomfort for the patient. Nerve damage and neuropathic pain is also possible for those with collagen issues in their bones. Thankfully, splints are unlike their peers for they don’t put too much pressure on the fractured site where they’re placed.
4. Using Splints Can Minimize The Risk For Secondary Injuries
When someone applies a splint correctly, it should prevent the patient from having any secondary injuries like pressure sores. Enclosed options like casts may put undue pressure on the skin and tissue, primarily when swelling occurs.
Vascular damage or constriction is possible as well for other treatment options, which leads to blood clots forming and spreading through the blood vessels. Using a splint will minimize this risk as it’s less obstructive than a cast or some of the other techniques for immobilizing a fracture.
5Reduces Chances Of Compartment Syndrome
The rare yet severe condition known as compartment syndrome could leave a patient with numbness, swelling, and pain in their muscles, as well as the sensation of tightness of limbs. It could be a life-threatening complication that’s more common among patients with more restrictive devices like casts.
Additionally, due to the swelling of the injury site sometimes because of the pressure from a cast and the like, the muscles, blood vessels, and other underlying tissues may suffer. The pent-up force and pressure can even lead to death in the worst instances. Luckily, with a splint, the chances of developing this syndrome are significantly less.
A broken bone could be very uncomfortable, sore, and cause possible complications for the patient. But with using a splint for broken bones, there seem to be more positives than negatives. Bones may take weeks to heal, so keeping the patient as comfortable and pain-free as possible is a significant part of the healing journey.
If a cast or other treatment method is too restrictive or the patient is showing signs that the type of care they’re receiving for their bone fractures isn’t appropriate, the attending medical team can easily switch to a splint that’ll provide the same support for the patient’s fracture minus the negatives.
Although some may think splints seem too insignificant to make a difference and expect more elaborate regimens in treating broken bones, they’re perfect for helping a bone fracture heal and have the injured person up and about in no time.