5 Natural Ways To Heal A Jammed Finger + Causes And Symptoms

Written by Shaheen Naser

If you have hurt your fingertip in a volleyball match or slammed a door on your finger, such accidents may cause a jammed finger. Natural treatment for jammed fingers mostly involves topical soothing methods. While most of the time, it subsides on its own, without any treatment, sometimes it may cause stiffness and swelling.

In this article, you will learn about jammed fingers, symptoms, and how they can be managed with home remedies. Scroll down to learn more.

What Is A Jammed Finger?

A jammed finger is a common occurrence that causes the tip of your finger to be pushed back toward your hand. The force of the impact can cause your ligaments (bands of connective tissues that hold your bones together) to stretch or tear, thereby resulting in a sprain.

This may damage your tendon or even cause a fracture. If your finger isn’t fractured by this impact, it can become swollen and painful.

It can be difficult to tell if your finger is broken or jammed. Don’t worry, we’ve got you covered. Here’s how you can differentiate between the two.

Signs And Symptoms – Jammed Finger Vs. Broken Finger

Jammed Finger

The signs and symptoms of a jammed finger include:

  • Pain in the affected finger
  • Difficulty in using the jammed finger to hold anything
  • Inflammatory symptoms like redness and swelling in the injured finger

Broken Finger

The symptoms exhibited by a broken finger are:

  • Severe throbbing pain in the affected finger
  • Inability to move or even straighten your finger
  • Swelling in the finger that may last for days or even weeks

While the symptoms of both jammed and fractured fingers may be similar in certain ways, they are much worse and severe in the case of the latter.

We have already understood what triggers a jammed finger. Let’s look a little more into this right below.

What Causes A Jammed Finger?

A jammed finger is caused by any sudden force that causes your fingertip to be pushed down. It is most commonly triggered by an injury to the joint of your middle finger. This joint, where your finger bends in half, is referred to as the proximal interphalangeal joint (PIP).

When small ligaments (collateral ligaments) that support the PIP joint are strained or overstretched, your finger may get jammed. Such strains tend to happen when your finger ends up absorbing a lot of force from an injury – like the one from catching a ball or other similar injuries.

A jammed finger needs to be fixed. Most cases of jammed fingers are minor and can be treated right at home unless it is a fracture that you are unaware of. Listed below are some home remedies that can help in treating a jammed finger.

How To Fix A Jammed Finger Naturally

  1. Ice Pack
  2. Epsom salt
  3. Aloe Vera Gel
  4. Apple Cider Vinegar
  5. Turmeric

5 Natural Treatments To Fix Jammed Fingers

1. Ice Pack

Ice pack for jammed finger


You Will Need

An ice pack or cold compress

What You Have To Do
  1. Apply an ice pack to the jammed finger immediately after the injury.
  2. Leave it on for 15-20 minutes and remove.
  3. Repeat as and when required.
How Often You Should Do This

You can do this multiple times daily.

Why This Works

An ice pack can help alleviate the pain of the jammed finger by numbing the area. It can also help in alleviating swelling and inflammation due to its anti-inflammatory effects (1).

2. Epsom Salt

Epsom salt for jammed finger


You Will Need
  • 1 tablespoon of Epsom salt
  • Water
  • A large bowl or basin
What You Have To Do
  1. Fill a large bowl or basin with warm water.
  2. Add a tablespoon of Epsom salt to it and mix well.
  3. Soak the jammed finger in the mixture for 15-20 minutes.
How Often You Should Do This

You may do this once daily.

Why This Works

The anti-inflammatory activities of magnesium in Epsom salt can help in soothing inflammation, pain, and swelling associated with a jammed finger (2).

3. Aloe Vera Gel

Aloe vera gel for jammed finger


You Will Need

1-2 teaspoons of aloe gel

What You Have To Do
  1. Apply freshly extracted aloe vera gel to the affected finger.
  2. Leave it on for 15-20 minutes before rinsing it off.
How Often You Should Do This

You can do this multiple times daily.

Why This Works

Aloe vera exhibits excellent healing and anti-inflammatory properties (3). Hence, it can be a great option for alleviating the pain and inflammation in the affected finger.

4. Apple Cider Vinegar

Apple cider vinegar for jammed finger


You Will Need
  • 1 tablespoon of apple cider vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon of water
  • Cotton ball
What You Have To Do
  1. Mix a tablespoon of apple cider vinegar with a tablespoon of water.
  2. Soak a cotton ball in this mixture and apply it to the affected finger.
  3. Leave it on for 15-20 minutes and remove.
How Often You Should Do This

You may do this 2-3 times daily.

Why This Works

While there is no scientific evidence to back this claim, anecdotal evidence suggests that the anti-inflammatory nature of ACV can be quite effective in treating inflammatory symptoms like swelling and pain.

5. Turmeric

Turmeric for jammed finger


You Will Need
  • 1 teaspoon of turmeric powder
  • Water (as required)
What You Have To Do
  1. Add a few drops of water to a teaspoon of turmeric powder.
  2. Mix well to form a thick paste.
  3. Apply the paste to the affected finger and leave it on for 15-20 minutes.
  4. Rinse it off with water.
How Often You Should Do This

You can do this 1-2 times daily.

Why This Works

Curcumin, the active component of turmeric, possesses excellent anti-inflammatory and healing properties (4). It may help in treating the pain, swelling, and redness in the jammed finger.

While these remedies do their job in speeding up the healing, here are some tips to protect your finger from further damage.

Prevention Tips

  • Avoid using the jammed finger until it has recovered completely.
  • Take a break from sports and other physical activities that may worsen the injury.
  • Keep the finger strapped or splinted until it has healed completely.
  • Once the jammed finger heals, do small exercises like making a fist or holding a tension ball or other objects to regain the lost strength of your finger.

A jammed finger is a common condition that will usually heal on its own. It occurs when the tip of your finger is pushed back. But, at times, it may take a little longer to heal. If left untreated, it can lead to complications. However, there are some effective natural treatments for jammed fingers. To fix jammed fingers, you can use an ice pack, Epsom salt, aloe vera gel, apple cider vinegar, and turmeric. In addition, avoid using your jammed finger until it heals. Take a break from sports and perform small exercises to prevent further damage.

Frequently Asked Questions

How long does it take for a jammed finger to heal?

Most cases of a jammed finger should typically heal in 1 to 2 weeks. However, it may take longer if the injury is severe.

What is the difference between a sprained finger and a broken finger?

Sprained Finger

• It is caused by damage to the ligaments that connect the joints and bones of the finger.
• It causes mild to moderate pain.
• It may lead to reduced mobility but without any physical changes.

Broken Finger

• It causes injury to the bones and joints of the finger.
• It causes a severe throbbing pain, which may be alarming enough for most people to seek medical intervention.
• A broken finger may appear disfigured or abnormally bent.

When to see a doctor for a jammed finger?

See a doctor immediately if:
• The affected finger appears crooked or abnormally bent (Don’t try to straighten the finger by yourself!).
• The finger feels numb and starts turning white or very pale.
• You develop a fever following the injury.
• The finger becomes extremely swollen.
• You cannot straighten the finger completely.
• The symptoms degrade instead of improving with time.

How to test a jammed finger?

Your doctor can usually diagnose a jammed finger just by looking at it. The doctor may look for symptoms of swelling and also ask you how well you can move the affected finger. If a fracture is suspected, you may be asked to take additional tests like an X-ray, CT scan, or MRI scan.

Does arthritis feel like a jammed finger?

The inflammatory symptoms of a jammed finger like swelling and pain are similar to the initial symptoms of arthritis. However, a jammed finger does not mean that you may develop arthritis.

Does pulling a jammed finger help?

No. Although many athletes tend to pull a jammed finger, it should not be done. Pulling or exerting extra pressure on a jammed finger can further create stress on a new injury.


  1. Cold and compression in the management of musculoskeletal injuries and orthopedic operative procedures: a narrative review” Open Access Journal of Sports Medicine, US National Library Of Medicine.
  2. Magnesium Decreases Inflammatory Cytokine Production: A Novel Innate Immunomodulatory Mechanism” Journal of Immunology, US National Library Of Medicine.
  3. Topical Application of Aloe vera Accelerated Wound Healing, Modeling, and Remodeling: An Experimental Study.” Annals of Plastic Surgery, US National Library Of Medicine.
  4. Effect of curcumin on tendon healing: an experimental study in a rat model of Achilles tendon injury.” International Orthopaedics, US National Library Of Medicine.

Key Takeaways

  • A jammed finger may experience redness and swelling.
  • Though both a jammed finger and a broken finger have similar symptoms, a broken finger is much worse than the other.
  • You can treat a jammed finger with the help of some home remedies.
  • Home remedies like an ice pack, Epsom salt, turmeric, aloe vera, or apple cider vinegar can help you treat a jammed finger.

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