Splinters are small fragments of metal, glass, or wood that are embedded in your skin. They can be very painful and need to be dealt with as quickly as possible in order to relieve discomfort and the possibility of infection. The majority of us try to dig the splinter out using a needle or some tweezers, but this is not a safe method as it can significantly increase the risk of infection. There are loads of other safe and simple home remedies that make it easier to remove splinters without added complications.
Here are the top 10 home remedies to remove splinters safely and without pain:
1. Duct Tape
This is one of the easiest methods to remove a splinter. This simple remedy works best when some of the splinter is still sticking out of the skin. It will not work for fully embedded splinters.
1. Use lukewarm water and soap to wash the skin surrounding the splinter, and allow it to dry.
2. Place a piece of duct tape over it.
3. Gently rub over the top of the tape with your fingertip.
4. Wait 5 minutes, then pull the tape off in one motion. The splinter will come out with the tape.
5. Finish by cleaning the area again with some lukewarm water.
2. White Vinegar
White vinegar is another very effective home remedy for splinters as the acidity of the vinegar will cause the splinter to break through the surface of the skin, making it easier to pull out with some tweezers.
1. Pour some white vinegar into a small bowl.
2. Soak the affected area for 15 to 20 minutes.
3. Check whether the splinter has risen out of your skin. If so, pull it out using some tweezers. If not, continue to soak the area until it does so.
4. After the splinter has been removed, rinse the area with lukewarm water.
3. Baking Soda
Baking soda is good for those splinters that are difficult to see, as well as those that are deeply embedded in the skin. Baking soda helps to reduce pain and pushes the splinter to the surface, so it is easier to pull out.
1. Mix water and 1/4 teaspoon of baking soda to form a thick paste.
2. Spread this paste onto a bandage and place the bandage over the affected area.
3. After 24 hours, take the bandage off.
4. If the splinter is visible, pull it out. If not, repeat the above steps and wait another 24 hours.
5. After the splinter has been removed, rinse the skin gently with lukewarm water.
For more uses of baking soda, click here.
4. Hydrogen Peroxide
Hydrogen peroxide disinfects the area and reduces inflammation so that the splinter is easier to remove.
1. Soak a cotton ball in 3% hydrogen peroxide.
2. Secure the cotton ball on the affected area with tape.
3. Leave it for a few hours.
4. Remove the cotton ball and pull the splinter out with a pair of clean tweezers.
5. Rinse the area with lukewarm water.
5. Epsom Salt
Epsom salt works wonders on deeply lodged splinters as it draws water out of the skin cells, bringing the splinter to the surface.
1. Place a pinch of Epsom salt on a bandage.
2. Place the bandage on the affected area.
3. Leave it there for the whole day.
4. Remove the bandage in the evening.
5. Pull the splinter out using some tweezers.
If you would like to read about other uses of Epsom salt, click here.
6. Banana Peel
Banana peels contain enzymes that will soften the skin and make the splinter move to the surface. Furthermore, its moisturizing and antimicrobial properties will prevent any further infection.
1. Cut a small piece of banana peel.
2. Place the peel (with the white side down) on the affected area, and secure it with some tape.
3. Leave it overnight.
4. The next morning, remove the splinter using some tweezers.
Banana peel also has many other uses, you can read more about them by clicking here.
7. Raw Potato
This remedy works best when the splinter is partially visible, not when it is embedded deep in the skin.
1. Wash a raw potato and cut off a thick slice.
2. Place the potato slice on the splinter, make sure the fleshy part is touching the splinter.
3. Gently press down so that the splinter pierces the potato.
4. Carefully remove the potato slice, along with the splinter.
8. Lavender Essential Oil
Lavender oil will help draw the splinter out, and thanks to its antimicrobial properties, it will also help prevent any infections from occurring.
1. Apply a couple of drops of lavender essential oil to the affected area.
2. Leave it for a few hours.
3. From time to time, check whether the splinter has risen to the skin's surface.
4. Once it has, remove it with a pair of tweezers.
Honey encourages the splinter to move toward the surface so it's easier to remove. Furthermore, due to its moisturizing and antiseptic properties, it will sooth the skin and prevent infections.
1. Spread a lot of honey onto the affected area.
2. Place a bandage over it and leave overnight.
3. The next morning, pull the splinter out using some tweezers.
4. After rinsing with some lukewarm water, reapply some more honey to heal the skin.
10. Bread and Milk
This remedy has been used for centuries to remove splinters.
1. Dip some bread in some warm milk.
2. Apply this to the area and secure with a bandage.
3. Leave overnight.
4. Remove the next morning - the splinter should come with it.
5. Clean the affected area with some lukewarm water to prevent infections.