Wednesday, January 23, 2013

That Time I Got Five Stitches in my Thumb

Let this post be a lesson to all of you: be careful opening cans. I'm serious here.

Here I was, minding my own business, making some mac and cheese with peas for a Sunday afternoon treat. I go to open the can of peas. Our can opener is right-handed, and I'm left-handed, foreshadowing the problem already. The handle was slippery for some reason, so I struggle trying to open the can. I get about halfway around, where the lid is popped open halfway, when the can opener slips out of my hand and I gash my left thumb on the super sharp edge of the lid.

It's a stupid accident for sure, but it could happen to anyone.

(Don't mind me, didn't exactly have time to put makeup on)

Thank god my roommate and I were prepared. If you don't have a first aid kit in your apartment or dorm, get one now! We tied gauze around the thumb (well, she did, while I was freaking out) and sealed it with medical tape.

Even though I kept telling her I was fine, my roommate was the smart one in this situation and called a taxi to take us to the nearest emergency room. Have a doubt about an injury? Go to the emergency room. Better safe than sorry, right?

Before we went, I had the sense to pull out the copy I have of my insurance card. This also was a god-send. My dad made me make several copies of my insurance card right when I started college. It was a lifesaver, and saved me a huge hospital bill. Make several copies of your insurance card! Who knows when something bad can happen.

My premed roommate and I tried to make the best of a situation and loved being in the ER, just to see how it worked. They seem to be great at efficiency, having a nurse take my initial vitals and information, a technician clean off my wound, and a resident stitch me back up. She was extremely nice  to me, calming me down (I've never gotten stitches before! And I was three hours away from my family! Don't laugh).

In the end of the day, I got five stitches (two on my nailbed...ouch) and my hand looks like a mummy who's gauze has started rotting off.

As horrible as it was at the time, this experience showed me how to act in an emergency. Again, here are the four tips I can leave you all with so hopefully you won't have the same experience as I did:

1. Have a first aid kit in your apartment
2. When in doubt, go to the ER
3. Make copies of your insurance card
4. Be careful opening cans. They're evil.

Anybody else have any exciting stories about going to the ER? Any tips on how to handle a situation like this?


  1. Oh it's terrible. I hope you get better soon :)


  2. I sliced my finger open last year but we didn't go to the ER. Hubs is a doctor, a Chiropractor, but still has first aid training. We cleaned it up, tight bandages and kept it clean.
    We have a HUGE emergency kit! I even posted about it. Glad you were well taken care of!

  3. I hope you get better soon! Great tips by the way!
    Found you on Blogaholic :)

    ~Becca Marie from College Life (

  4. Oh my life! I hope you're doing okay!

    P.S I nominated you for the Liebster Award over on my blog :)

  5. I hope you are doing okay! Great tips!
    This past September I had a pool table collapse on my toes while at the beach in OBX and I had to get 9 stitches in my big toe!



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