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How to fix the nail
Rip out the offending shard with pliers 11%
Tear out the whole thumbnail with pliers and start regrowing from scratch 23%
Grind down the shard with a belt sander 29%
Amputate the thumb 29%
Just deal with it and try to avoid loose fabric 5%

Votes: 17

 Trouble with my thumbnail

 Author:  Topic:  Posted:
Nov 05, 2001
About 2 weeks ago I was spending yet another weekend fucking about with something or other on my car. As usual, at one point a nut gave way to significant force in such a way that I smashed my hand into something metallic and sharp. On this occassion it was a bit of pipe that found my left thumbnail and tore a little crescent shaped bit of it back to the skin behind the nail. Not a big deal, I thought at the time, and I quickly taped a bit of rag to it to absorb the blood and continued working.

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Now when a finger or toenail gets damaged they tend to grow a bit funny forever after. I already have a couple of these greasemonkey scars, and I'm not overly concerned about having another. However, this one looks like it will be a little more problematic.

The shard o' nail that was peeled up extends back to the cuticle, and after 2 weeks it shows no sign of ever rejoining the rest of the nail proper. It just keeps growing along it's own merry little trajectory, totally divorced from the formation that spawned it.

The little bugger is adept at getting caught on clothing and other items, often being lifted up just enough to induce a little blood flow. This is getting to be irritating, and nothing ruins a good shower like suddenly discovering that your finger is attached to the towel when drying off. Even worse is having a piece of nail catch on a hard surface unexpectedly and being bent back 90 degrees.

So I'm soliciting solution suggestions for my little problem. Please vote in the poll at right and let me know what you think my best course of action would be.


Just desserts you auto-crazed USian (5.00 / 1) (#1)
by Anonymous Reader on Mon Nov 5th, 2001 at 11:48:14 AM PST
If you only adopted sensible European mass-transit for those culturally devoid wastelands you call cities, you can get to and from your destination with a minimum of fuss, and leave that nasty mechanical stuff to the Geordies and such, who enjoy grease on their hands and battered fingers.

OHMYGOD (none / 0) (#4)
by FreemoreJohnson on Mon Nov 5th, 2001 at 06:03:22 PM PST
You really do need to stop stroking your pet project every once in a while.

Skiing. (none / 0) (#2)
by dmg on Mon Nov 5th, 2001 at 12:12:45 PM PST
I once had both big toenails die on me. I was skiing in the Austrian resort of Soll, when I hit a drift and my toes slammed into the ends of my boots killing both nails.

for a while they went black, then they both dropped off. Now, nearly 10 years later they are still a bit deformed.

The solution ? Be careful out there, an ounce of prevention....

time to give a Newtonian demonstration - of a bullet, its mass and its acceleration.
-- MC Hawking

I have these kinds of problems quite often. (none / 0) (#3)
by jin wicked on Mon Nov 5th, 2001 at 04:58:23 PM PST
Can you move it? Maybe you could glue it to the main part of the nail, or wrap tape around your thumb to keep it from hitting things. I have personally found that masking tape can repair practically anything. But you shouldn't tape it on anything valuable because it isn't a conservation-grade material.

If you get your hands wet much maybe duct tape or electrical tape would be better. Or silicon...or maybe some kind of epoxy.

"Ars longa, vita brevis...Art is long, life is short."

you have precisely one option (none / 0) (#5)
by osm on Mon Nov 5th, 2001 at 07:39:55 PM PST
get a pair of small sewing scissors. the really small ones. i have a pair and they are invaluable for minor outpatient surgery. get some orajel and squirt it on the exposed part if you have to. personally, i find the pain quite rewarding. next, you must cut off the dangling part of the nail. remember to use plenty of hydrogen peroxide or alcohol. i like alcohol, myself. if you want to be extra certain, use bleach. wrap it up in some sterile gauze. this loose nail must be dealt with like a cheating girlfriend: efficiently, quickly and without mercy.

Nail varnish (none / 0) (#6)
by vor on Tue Nov 6th, 2001 at 05:23:53 PM PST
When I did something similar a year or two back, (a big split in my case, which I didn't want to widen), I sealed it up with nail varnish while it grew out. A few coats of varnish will not only hold the nail together, but it smooths over any snaggy bits at the same time.

I used to recoat it two or three times a day, and I have a feeling my workmates looked at me kinda funny, sitting at my desk painting my nail, but I lived through it.

As a guitar player will tell you, (none / 0) (#7)
by plastik55 on Thu Nov 8th, 2001 at 12:44:22 AM PST
The proper solution is nothing other than Superglue.
No shit, cyanoacrylate glue was originally intended to be used for making stitchless sutures--it's non-toxic and binds skin and nails extremely well. Most classical guitarists (whose careers live and die by the intactness of their nails) swear by it for repairing tears and generally improving nail strength. In your case, just glue the offending portion down onto the rest of the nail and wait for it to grow out. In the future, consider painting your nails with an occasional coat of superglue to prevent future damage.
If the problem persists, go see a podiatrist (or some other kind of doctor which would know about nails.)

You fucking terror midget. Die a firey fucking death. -- Matthew 30:06


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