March 1, 2024
Discover the best way to remove a deep splinter you cannot see with this step-by-step guide featuring five practical techniques and tips for safe splinter removal. Also, find out when it's appropriate to seek medical attention.


Getting a splinter is never fun, but it becomes even more frustrating when it’s deep in your skin and you can’t see it. The good news is that there are several techniques you can use at home to remove the splinter before seeking medical attention. This article provides a step-by-step guide on how to remove a deep splinter you cannot see.

Note: If you experience signs of infection, such as redness, swelling, and warmth around the area, or if you cannot remove the splinter on your own, it is important to seek medical attention.

Technique 1: Warm Compress

Using a warm compress can help bring the splinter closer to the surface, making it easier to remove with tweezers.

  1. Soak a clean washcloth in warm water. Wring out the excess water and place the cloth over the affected area for 10-15 minutes.
  2. Once the skin has softened, clean the affected area with soap and water.
  3. Sterilize a pair of tweezers by cleaning them with rubbing alcohol.
  4. Gently grip the splinter with the tweezers and pull it out in the same direction it went in. If the splinter breaks, remove the remaining piece the same way.
  5. Once the splinter is removed, clean the area with soap and water and apply an antibiotic ointment to help prevent infection.

Technique 2: Sterilized Needle

If the splinter is embedded too deeply, a sterilized needle can be used to remove it.

  1. Sterilize the needle by cleaning it with rubbing alcohol.
  2. Using the tip of the needle, scrape away the skin around the splinter gently.
  3. When a part of the splinter is visible, use the sterilized tweezers to pull it out.
  4. If the splinter is not visible yet, repeat the previous step until it appears.
  5. Once the splinter is removed, wash and disinfect the area.

Technique 3: Tape

Using tape to remove a deep splinter can be effective if the splinter is not embedded too deeply.

  1. Clean the affected area with soap and water or rubbing alcohol.
  2. Wrap a piece of sticky tape over the affected area, pressing firmly against the skin.
  3. Slowly peel the tape away from the skin. The splinter should come out with the tape.
  4. If the spl-inter does not come out, use tweezers to remove it gently.
  5. Afterward, wash the area thoroughly and apply antiseptic ointment.
  6. Do not use tape to remove a splinter in an area with hair or where the skin is thin, such as the face, genitals, or fingers. Additionally, do not use tape if you have sensitive skin, as it may cause irritation or damage.

Technique 4: Baking Soda and Water Paste

Baking soda and water can be used as a natural remedy to draw out the splinter.

  1. Mix a small amount of baking soda with enough water to form a thick paste.
  2. Apply the paste evenly over the affected area.
  3. Cover the area with a bandage or gauze and leave it for a few hours.
  4. Remove the bandage and gently rinse the area with water to wash away the paste and the splinter.
  5. If the splinter does not come out after one application, repeat the process for a few more hours.
  6. Avoid using this method if the area is already infected or if a lot of swelling occurs. The baking soda paste could further irritate the area, and the infection could worsen.

Technique 5: Epsom Salt Soak

Epsom salt baths are another great way to hasten a splinter to rise to the surface of the skin.

  1. Fill a small bowl with warm water and add a tablespoon of Epsom salt.
  2. Stir the mixture until the salt is dissolved into the water.
  3. Soak the affected area in the solution for 10-15 minutes a day, preferably for several days in a row until the splinter emerges from the skin.
  4. Remove the splinter gently with sterilized tweezers and wash the area thoroughly.
  5. Avoid using Epsom salt if you have sensitive skin or low blood pressure. And, consult with your doctor if you have a heart condition or any other medical issue before using Epsom salt to heal a splinter.

When to Seek Medical Attention

If the splinter is too deep or you cannot remove it with any of the techniques listed above, then it is essential to seek medical attention. Additionally, if you see any indicators of an infection, such as redness, swelling, warmth, fever, you should see a doctor immediately. Ignoring these symptoms and trying to remove the splinter on your own could make the situation worse.


Learning how to remove a deep splinter that you can’t see is an essential skill. It’ll save you a lot of pain, stress, and even hours at the doctor’s office. In this article, we’ve covered several different techniques to help you safely extract a splinter from your skin, so you don’t have to worry about it further. However, if you are unsure of how to proceed, or you cannot see the splinter, medical intervention is essential. It is always best to take care of an issue early on.

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