A boil is a skin infection that can start either within the oil glands on the skin or in a hair follicle. Most parts of the body are susceptible to developing boils, though they are most common on the face, shoulders and armpits. Treating a common boil can be a tedious process, but unless complications occur, you can treat the skin condition on your own.
One of the easiest skin treatments to help heal a boil is to soak the boil in water or use warm compresses. This treatment helps to relieve the pain that the boil may be causing, and it can also speed up the process by bringing the infection to the surface of the skin. The compress or the soaking should be done two or three times per day until the boil bursts. This can happen anywhere from seven to ten days after the boil first appears. It is important to remember that the boil will most likely burst on its own, so do not try to use a needle to puncture it. This could cause further infections.
Once the boil has burst, it is important to keep the area clean to avoid further infection. The draining boil should be washed carefully with antibacterial soap until all the pus is gone from the area. After that, you may apply medicated ointment. The draining boil should be washed at least two times a day. It is important to keep it covered with a bandage until it heals. If it is taking awhile to drain, you can continue to apply a warm compress to the area until it heals. Most boils will heal if this treatment is followed, though there are times when medical intervention may be necessary.
Some of the signs that it may be time to see a doctor for professional treatment include swollen lymph nodes, a fever, redness or red streaks around the boil, additional boils appearing around the original site, and severe pain. There are also some people who have risk factors that indicate a visit to the doctor for this condition. These risk factors include diabetes, weakened immune systems and heart conditions.
If you choose to see a doctor to treat a boil, there are a couple of options that they may choose to use to help you heal your condition. The doctor may lance the boil for you. After this, you will still need to clean the area two or three times a day and keep it covered. If the infection gets severe, a doctor may lance the boil and take a culture to see what type of bacterial is causing the infection. Blood tests may be drawn and antibiotics may also be prescribed in severe cases.
In order to prevent a future occurrence of a boil, it is important to take some action steps at home. First, you will want to wash clothing, bedding and towels carefully. Making sure you practice good hygiene is also important for prevent boils in the future. you will also want to be diligent about cleaning minor cuts and skin wounds in the future.
Post Author: Diana Chin@EzineArticles