If you had a boil, what would you use to try and ease the pain and get it to pop more quickly, and then to protect yourself from infections and boils coming back?
I have a nasty boil in my inner thigh that I think came from shaving. The hair must have become ingrowing and then developed into a boil? It is quite painful as it rubs against my jeans and I would really like to be rid of this boil as soon as possible, but I am not sure how.
I read about applying hot compresses but I want to add medication if possible.
If you go to your general practitioner about a boil, he or she will most likely give you a course of antibiotics if your infection is severe enough to warrant them. (Or just in case, if you live in a place where antibiotics are handed out like cookies. In which case you should be asking if that's really necessary.... you don't wanna contribute to antibiotic resistance!) Over the counter creams that contain antibiotics are available. More often though, you will read that simple rubbing alcohol is recommended to keep the site of the boil clean. Apply compresses like you said and gently squeeze the boil when it looks like it's ready to come to a head. They are no big deal, boils, unless you have many and they keep coming back, in which case something more serious may be up...
No particular medications are available for boils. You are supposed to leave lone boils alone until they are ready to pop, which means not messing with the skin or attempting to pop the boil while it is firm and small. Once it is ready to go all by itself, you can help the boil along a little by applying pressure with clean hands. You could even use surgical gloves, as well. Do not use your nails, however.
Remember that disturbing the skin before your boil is ready to pop greatly increases your risk that you will be left with scarring. On that note, you could possibly consider anti-scarring cream after your boil has popped and the skin has started healing.
1. You notice that an area of your skin is painful and tender.
2. You notice a lump.
3. The lump develops a yellow head.
4. The boil gets bigger and eventually pops spontaneously, and pus drains out. You can squeeze the boil now.
5. Things go back to normal, though you may have some scarring.
I agree with the scar cream suggestion. Other than that though, really don't worry about it and you don't even need to pop the boil yourself, as it will do that all on its own when it is ready.
Placing a warm face cloth on the boil for around 10 or 20 minutes a day is often recommended. The reason behind this bit of advice is that the hot cloth increases blood circulation to the site, which allows your immune system to send more white blood cells there to fight the infection.
The boil will eventually burst, after which you can cover it with sterile gauze.
Now, if you have a large boil that just doesn't seem to come to a head and that is soft and spongy to the touch, that's the point at which you will want to ask your doctor to excise it for you, because such boils can stick around for a very long time without ever bursting.
In any case, good luck with your boil and I hope it goes away soon!!!
I completely understand the visceral reaction to want to do something proactive about a boil! It's something that you just don't want on your body, and anything that could help treat it more quickly sounds like a good idea.
Resist that temptation, though! As counterintuitive as it sounds, every doctor will give you the same advice you have already been given. Even if you approach a doctor to ask them to treat your boil, you may well be sent home with the very same advice — to apply hot compresses and otherwise leave your boil well alone until it is ready to burst. During the last stage, you can help burst the boil gently.