First Aid for Foreign Object in the Skin

8 January 2013
Comments: 0
Category: Wound Management
8 January 2013, Comments: 0

When foreign objects enter the skin, they may pierce through it superficially or embed themselves deep inside the skin. This condition can be dealt with self-treatment, however, if unexpected or unexplained complications result, it is advisable that you call medical help immediately. Cuts or puncture wounds are often caused by sharp or pointy objects or objects such as glass, wood splinters or fiber glass.


  • Pain
  • Irritation
  • Bleeding
  • Swelling


If the foreign object is protruding out of the skin and is visible, follow these steps:

  1. Wash your hands thoroughly with soap and water.
  2. Properly clean the affected area using soap and water.
  3. Using a pair of tweezers, gently removed the object projecting from the skin, this can be a wood splinter, fiberglass or a piece of glass. You can use a magnifying glass to enhance visibility of the object to carefully remove it.
  4. Gently squeeze the wound to encourage bleeding so that the germs are drained out.
  5. Wash the affected area again with soap and water and dry it using a clean piece of fabric.
  6. Apply a topical antibiotic ointment on the wound to prevent infection.

In case the object is embedded completely, follow these steps:First Aid for Foreign Object in the Skin

  1. Wash your hands thoroughly with soap and water.
  2. Sterilize a needle by using rubbing alcohol to wipe it. Make sure the needle is clean, sharp and not rusty. If you do not have rubbing-alcohol, you may use soap and water to clean it.
  3. Use the sterilized needle to pierce the skin and lift the object out. Use a magnifying glass to perform the procedure with better visibility.
  4. Once the object is projected out, use a pair of tweezers to pull the object out gently.
  5. Gently squeeze the wound to allow bleeding so that the germs drain out.
  6. Wash the affected region properly and dry it with a clean piece of fabric. Apply a topical antibiotic on the wound.

When to seek medical attention

  • You are not able to pull off the object.
  • The object is embedded somewhere close to the eye region.

Doctors advise that you should get a tetanus shot once every 10 years so that you are less susceptible to infection when a foreign object breaks through your skin. If an object has broken through your skin and has left dirt or debris, get a booster shot if your last shot was taken within the last 5 years.

Related Video to Removing a Splinter



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