1. Start by soaking the foot in warm water to soften the skin.
2. Wash your hands and gently clean the area of your foot that the splinter is lodged in.
3. Once the skin is soft, try to squeeze out the splinter by putting your fingers on either side of the splinter and pinching gently.
4. If the splinter won’t come out by squeezing, disinfect a pair of tweezers and a needle with rubbing alcohol, iodine or boiling water and let them dry. If the splinter is still sticking out of the skin, then use the tweezers to grasp the end and pull gently but firmly. You want to avoid breaking the splinter so that the tail end remains in the body. To do this, pull the splinter out at the same angle that it entered the body.
5. If you can’t grasp the splinter with the tweezers, use the needle to slightly open the skin where the splinter is lodged. Grasp the end of the splinter with the tweezers and pull firmly. Don’t dig for the splinter. If you’re having trouble reaching it, or if you are making the wound worse, see a doctor.
6. If the needle doesn’t work to open the skin, you may want to disinfect and use a pair of nail clippers.
7. Remember to gently wash your foot once you’re done.
And remember, sometimes splinters are just plain stubborn. All you may need is a little patience. (Most of the time, it doesn’t matter if a splinter stays in your body for a couple of days.) It will eventually work its way out. Lauren S. recalls:
Once when I was walking around on the deck of an old house in Cape Cod I got a splinter so deep in my toe that failed to come out after tweezers, a knife (with vodka drinking as anesthesia), a trip to hospital with scalpel and regular anesthesia. It finally came out fully a month later when I squeezed my toe.