I have suffered with these for nigh on 15 years now. I would say I have suffered about 100 of these now. They started when i was 15 and had just started shaving down there.
Since then i have been to the GP numerous times, had every cream and antibiotic known to man, had to go to casualty to have them lanced more times than i care to remember, lanced my own so many times i am now a dab hand with a scalpel, and finally been referred to gynecologist who said it was a dermatology problem - so was referred to a dermatologist who said it was a gynecology problem. No-one felt it was their responsibility.
MY WORST ONES
Eventually the chemists knew me so well, they used to give me sterile solutions and scalpels so I could lance my own cleanly, but some were so painful I couldn't - Some of the worst situations involved an emergency operation under a general anesthetic. (graphic bit) my labia had swollen 3x the normal size I couldn't walk, couldn't eat, couldn't sleep, and had now started vomiting. The pain was so bad, once admitted to the hospital, i was put on morphine. After the operation and drainage the hole was so large it had to be packed. This particular one was a re-eruption of an old one over the space of only 2 days!
On another occasion I actually counted 7 in one go. always on the labia and top of the thighs next to the vagina.
WHAT THEY SAID
I was always told to stop shaving - the thing is, after what i have been through i stopped over 10 years ago. I only trim, or use a cream like immac, as it doesnt remove the hair from under the surface.
MY IDEA ON THE CAUSE:
Well now you can imagine - i am terribly scarred in that region. The problem though is this - Whilst i agree the issue is an ingrown hair, that is only the start.
Once the area erupts, and is drained unless you find that hair and remove it permanently, you will then heal with scar tissue - which causes even more problems. The hair is still there - still growing but can not get through the scar tissue - hence why you often get a re - eruption in the same place. I have also noticed the eruptions are closely related to my menstrual cycle. always erupting a few days prior to my period.
WHAT HAS HELPED (IMO)
This is just what has helped/not helped me not professional medical advice
Obviously I don't have a cure, but i do have some small tips on helping alleviate some of the symptoms.
1. Don't shave - Particularly don't shave any raw areas. if a hair is starting to come through a scarred area, you are just going to shave it off again!
2. Use a shower puff or exfoliating glove, after baths use a rich non scented moisturizer like E45. This i found kept the are soft and free of dead skin.
3. Take Vitamins in tablet (oral) / cream (direct application)
Vitamin C - boosts the immune system.
Vitamin E / Grape seed oil - moisturizes the skin
Vitamin A - Maintains healthy skin as it reduces the size and secretion of the sebaceous glands.
4. Try and wear cotton underwear, this causes less friction.
5. Hygiene - Goes without saying really!
1. firstly get a good light, check to see if you can see a hair struggling to get through. if so use a clean pair of tweezers and get that sucker out and apply some antiseptic, i actually have an aloe vera plant in my bathroom, and use the gel directly from the leaves. if no hair can be seen - you may need the next few tips.
2. Hot baths - The best way out is to get it out - which means bring the infection to the surface. have a hot bath regularly.
3. Use Magnesium Sulphate creams - available from most chemists. This cream should be applied directly, it draws the infection to the surface.
4. Drain it. - But don't force it. Most of the time I can literally just gently squeeze, and it will burst. If your squeezing and squeezing and it's not working- leave it - it isn't ready. If you know for a fact it is ready, but the skin is not breaking because of scar tissue or its just too painful to touch - you may need to have it lanced. If you plan on lancing it yourself, ensure that you wash your hands, wash the area involved, and use sterile pins/needles/scalpels etc. Throw whatever you use away immediately after.
Always apply an antiseptic such as aloe vera after draining, and apply a clean dressings for a day or two.
- 1. Keep it clean, use an antiseptic gel such as aloe vera regularly. Keep taking the vitamins. Vitamin E is very good for reducing scarring. ( yep, i didn't know about that in time)
I will always suffer from these, as i know i have ingrown hairs buried deep beneath the scarring, but (touch wood) I haven't had one of these suckers in a new area for a few years now, and that is an achievement for me!
Anyway I hope that some of my tips help. Finding this board and seeing just how common this problem is has really been an eye-opener for me, and comforting knowing I am not the only one, so thank you.
Oh and the woman who said in a previous post "its just an ingrown hair, stop fussing" well....
I am not a doctor i just suffer from these bacterial and viral infections.
see a doctor or a naturalist for home remedies.
plus for these little bumps which are actually little warts, for some big warts (moliscum) you can freeze them off with at home kits or go to the dermatologist or gynecologist.
feels like a bee sting but gets them to actually go away after a while. don’t keep freezing them every night. just freeze once, then wait a week, if they haven’t left do it again until.
She confirmed that it was just ingrown hairs, but wasn't really helpful besides that. She said to use a loofah in the area daily and to apply savlon cream after showering, but that some people are just prone to them and there's no easy fix.
I've been doing this for a few months now, and I still get them! I've tried hot compresses but some of the hairs are just too deep! I also have mild face/back/chest acne problems which no prescribed medication has been able to fix, so my theory (or hope) is that they'll die down as I get older.
I guess we all know that what we should be doing is not shaving/waxing/plucking the area and eating more fresh foods.
I'm gonna give this a go and see how it turns out for me! I've also just bought one of those ridiculously expensive anti-ingrown hair lotions and am hoping that will do something.
The spots don't really bother me anymore. My main concerns are:
1. that these ingrown hairs must be getting pretty long by now, and it can't be healthy for them to stay where they are!; and
2. I'm worried about scarring and that it's just not the kind of thing that you want to have to sit down and explain to a guy in the heat of the moment!
All i know is mine dont occur in same place twice and havnt spread anywhere after ive popped it and while erm having alone time with bf if ya catch my drift ive never passed it or one of them onto him its not a std as ive been checked for clamidia and always use precautions so i know im fine that way but good to know im not alone on this! Thanks girls your advice has made me feel a LOT better about what im going through every time i shave down there and know its happening to others whether you shave or not
Ps: ive never been to my dr about it as i feel i deal with it ok and i have some medical knowledge as job i want and degree is health based! But if it gets any worse i will go xx