Although I have never injured a finger to the point of it being dislocated, I have sustained such trauma to my toes. As much as that hurt, I can only assume the pain associated with a dislocated finger. This is a common injury, and it occurs when the bones of the finger are moved, or dislocated, from their normal position. While it can happen in any of the joints in the fingers, the most common joint to fall victim to this is the middle knuckle of the pinkie, ring, middle, or index finger.
It is usually caused by some sort of “jamming” force starting at the end of the finger. Also, the finger might be overextended by force. Both of these situations, or a combination thereof, can cause a dislocated finger.
Athletes are particularly susceptible to this type of injury. For example, a basketball or a baseball may hit the tip of an outstretched finger, or a player’s finger might accidentally become caught in something such as a game jersey or shoulder pads. In some instances, falling on an outstretched hand can cause a dislocated finger.
The outward signs of a dislocated finger are highly obvious. It may look crooked, or become swollen. It may bend upwards or at a strange angle. It will also be very painful. It is usually difficult, if not impossible, to bend or straighten a dislocated finger.
Other symptoms of a dislocated finger include numbness or tingling; it may appear to be pale in color, and the skin might be broken where the injury occurred. For any of these symptoms, a doctor should be seen immediately. Failing to do so may result in difficult treatment or failure to heal properly. If sensation is lost in the finger and it feels numb, then seek treatment in the emergency room right away. If the finger is cold, pale, or blue in color, or if there are any open areas of skin, it is imperative that a doctor is consulted without hesitation.
After examining the affected finger, an x-ray of it will confirm the dislocation and reveal any other broken bones. It is inadvisable to treat a dislocated finger at home. Be sure to remove any rings on the affected finger right away, before increased swelling makes that difficult.