Maybe it’s a piece of glass in your heel or a splinter in your finger. Or maybe it’s something lodged in your eye or a small toy your child swallowed. There are potentially a number of ways things can enter the human body. One thing is for certain: they aren’t supposed to be there.
When an object, such as a splinter, a shard, or any other object is stuck in a person’s body, they are known as “foreign bodies”. While some of these foreign bodies can usually be easily removed (a splinter in your finger or a piece of glass in your foot), others might require medical intervention. At the urgent care clinics which make up the UrgentMED Network, we offer fast, affordable and convenient foreign body removal for our patients throughout the Greater Los Angeles and Southern California Area.
How to Remove Foreign Bodies
Many foreign bodies are easily removed at home. If you have a small object or a piece of debris lodged in your skin, you might be able to safely remove it by following these steps:
- Thoroughly wash your hands with both soap and water.
- Sanitize tweezers with rubbing alcohol (if using them).
- Remove the object.
- Immediately sterilize the area with rubbing alcohol once the object is removed.
- Once dry, apply antibiotic ointment and a bandage to allow the area to heal properly.
For small objects in the eye, try flushing the object out with saline solution. For objects in the ear, attempt to dislodge them by tilting your head to the side, but never stick your fingers into the ear to try and dislodge it.
Serious Cases Need Professional Help
While many foreign bodies can be removed safely and easily at home, a general rule of thumb to follow is that if an object is deeply embedded in the skin, eyes, ears, nose, or esophagus, you should never attempt to remove it yourself. You should also never attempt to force an object out that you cannot effectively grasp or see.
If a foreign body is removed incorrectly, an individual may experience, swelling, discomfort and even infection. For objects in the ears and esophagus, improper removal could result in severe damage, including perforations to the esophagus or eardrums.
Visit an UrgentMED Network Member for Foreign Body Removal
If you have a foreign body that needs removal, the UrgentMED Network is here to help. Our medical experts are experienced in all aspects of foreign body removal, including objects lodged in the skin, eyes, ears, nose, and mouth.
With 17 locations across Los Angeles and Southern California, the walk-in clinics that make up the UrgentMED Network make it easy for you to get foreign bodies removed safely and quickly. With free parking, no appointment required, and a team of highly-skilled doctors, we can provide you with convenient, fast, and reliable care.