What Is A Boil And What Are My Treatment Options?
March 2, 2009 by admin
What is a boil? The truth is, a lot of people really don’t know… perhaps you’re one of them. Many people think skin boils and pimples are the same thing, for instance, but that’s not necessarily the case.
Like a pimple, boils do start as a red, sensitive area on the skin. However, boils go much deeper than pimples and usually are much larger. Pimples are basically surface irritations but they certainly can develop into skin boils too.
Reasons Skin Boils Develop
Another thing you should know about boils is that they are actually infections. They happen when staphylococcus, also known as staph, bacteria manage to get into your skin and infect your skin’s hair follicles.
To prevent boils, it’s best to keep your body as clean as possible. If you tend to get boils on a certain part of your body, double check your cleansing routine to be sure that particular area gets a thorough cleaning.
In addition, those who are prone to infections are more likely to get skin boils. For example, if you suffer from an illness such as diabetes, your immune system may have a more difficult time fighting off infection.
Another reason you may get a boil is because of simply sitting in one position too long. Sometimes boils form when the skin rubs together repeatedly for long periods of time as well. Often tight clothing is to blame. When the skin rubs together, a rash can form from the friction. If this irritated skin happens to break, it allows bacteria easy access to enter and result in an infection.
Common Types Of Boils
A furuncle is one of the most common types of boils. It completely kills the root of the hair in your hair follicle. The result is an ugly, pus-filled mess on the surface of your skin. If you have several furuncles, it’s known as furunculosis.
Then there are carbuncles. A carbuncle may look similar to a bunch of furuncles, but it’s actually a very different problem. A carbuncle is actually a bunch of boils that are inter-connected under your skin’s surface.
Actually, there are lots of different boil types and they’re all caused by different sources. So, it’s important to examine whether you get an occasional boil or you get them all the time. Then take look at what might be causing them so you can determine the appropriate next step for treatment and prevention.
Boil Treatment Solutions
One short-term home solution for a boil is to apply a hot, wet cloth to it or take a hot bath. You can also try keeping the area as clean as possible and not covering it with anything that could rub or irritate it. Many people report relief through the use of natural remedies for boils as well.
In the long-term though, you may want to consult your doctor. He or she can help you find a solution that’s right for you, especially if you suffer from boils on a recurring basis. Sometimes, simply answering the question of what is a boil isn’t enough. You need to know how to find relief, get rid of them and more importantly, how to prevent them.