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What are some natural ways to treat a swollen hand?

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Quick Answer

Common natural or home treatments used for swelling of the hand are rest, ice, compression and elevation, states WebMD. An acronym commonly used for this treatment is RICE. Avoid treatments that are known to increase swelling, such as hot baths, hot packs and alcoholic beverages, until swelling has ceased.

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Full Answer

Using an elastic bandage often helps reduce swelling and offers support of the injured hand, according to WebMD. Do not wrap the hand too tightly, as this can actually cause an increase in swelling below the bandage. Signs that an elastic bandage is too tight include numbness or tingling, increased pain, or coolness. It is also important to remove all jewelry from the hand and wrist, which could be difficult to remove if swelling worsens. Furthermore, keep the hand elevated above the heart whenever possible to reduce swelling.

Applying ice as quickly as possible can prevent or greatly reduce swelling, asserts WebMD. Apply ice for 10 to 20 minutes at least three times per day or more. Heat should only be applied when swelling is gone, 48 to 72 hours after injury, if pain is present. Never place ice or heat directly to the skin. Instead, use a towel to protect the skin and place the hot or cold pack on the towel. Resting the hand for a period of 24 hours after injury may also be beneficial in the reduction of swelling. Stopping, changing or taking a break from activities that cause pain or soreness is very important.

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