First Aid

How to Make a Homemade Sling for your Arm Arm Slings Homemade Arm Slings

Linda L Kinyon's image for:
"How to Make a Homemade Sling for your Arm Arm Slings Homemade Arm Slings"
Image by: 

Camping and hiking are great fun with family and friends. If you happen to be out camping or hiking and someone unexpectedly falls or injures their wrist, arm or shoulder you may find yourself in need of a sling for the duration of the trip.

All camping and hiking trips should have a good medical kit handy for those unexpected injuries. A good medical kit should include, at the bare minimum, all of the following:


Several large bandanna sized pieces of cloth


safety pins

Medical tape

a few sturdy pieces of board or plastic, or even some rolled up newspaper that can be used as splints

band aids


For hand, wrist, shoulder or arm injuries you may need a sling. Using the contents of your well prepared medical kit (see above) you can easily make a sling that will help support your injured limb or shoulder.

If you have a broken arm you will need to use the sturdy pieces of board or plastic and make a splint. After making the splint you will want to use the large bandanna sized piece of cloth to make a sling for your arm.

Lay the bandanna sized piece of fabric down on a table or clean area and fold it diagonally from corner to corner. You should now have a large triangle shaped piece of fabric.

Gently place the crook of your arm in the now triangle shaped piece of fabric and position it so that the fabric covers the elbow area and only your hand (except in the case of a wrist injury) is showing out of the other side of the fabric.

Have someone gently but firmly tie the other corners of the fabric around your neck. You may need to adjust the level of this so that the arm is held in a comfortable position.

Using the safety pin, gently pin the elbow end of the sling over the end of the arm to keep the sling from sliding and moving around too much or the elbow from slipping out the other end of the sling.

Keep in mind that we are dealing with a piece of fabric and knots can slip so you may need to adjust the sling periodically to keep it in the proper position.

In the case of a broken bone, make sure to seek medical attention as soon as possible to prevent further breakage or having to have the bone reset in a very painful fashion.


More about this author: Linda L Kinyon