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How to remove glass splinters

Updated November 21, 2016

A splinter is when a tiny shard of material becomes embedded in the skin. Glass splinters are sometimes trickier to remove than wood splinters, because they can break so easily and tiny pieces can remain in the skin. While not overly painful, splinters can cause infection if left in the skin.

Dip the tweezers in rubbing alcohol to sterilise them.

Grasp the splinter with the tweezers and pull it out. If the splinter is too small or difficult to grasp, move on to the next methods as continued poking and prodding can just push the splinter deeper into the skin.

Spread a layer of white glue over the area affected by the splinter. When the glue dries, it can be peeled back and the splinter may come with it. If only part of the splinter comes out with the glue, repeat this until all of the splinter is removed. If glue is unavailable, you can use tape instead.

Create a paste out of water and baking soda. Apply this paste to the affected area and wrap with a bandage. Overnight, the baking soda will cause mild swelling that may push the splinter out.

Place a bandage over the wound after you completely remove the splinter. This keeps the area clean to ward off infection and promote healing.

Tip

If none of the above methods remove a splinter, take a long and hot bath. The "prune" effect from sitting in water loosens the skin so you can expel the splinter.

Warning

If the splinter site becomes puffy, smelly or red, it may indicate an infection and you should see a doctor.

Things You'll Need

  • Rubbing alcohol
  • Tweezers
  • White glue or tape
  • Bandages
  • Baking Soda
  • Water
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