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How To Remove A Boil

How To Remove A Boil

How To Get Rid of a Boil: If you've ever had problems with your skin and boils, then this educational video will explain some of the underlying causes of boils and how you can get it treated.

I'm here to talk to you today about how to get rid of a boil. A boil is basically an infection deep in the skin, surrounding a hair follicle which has become infected. So, the medical name is a furuncle and it's different to folliculitis which is where you have very very small pustules on the surface of the skin.

It often presents as a red, hot tender lump. It can have a bit of pus overlying it. Sometimes, it can get bigger and form abscesses which do need treatment.

So assuming it's a fairly small boil, you need to probably actually see your GP to make sure it doesn't need lancing or antibiotics by mouth. Very rarely, if it's very small and you can see the pus near the surface, your GP can be using a small needle to get rid of the pus and that actually helps the healing. You can sometimes use antibiotic lotion if it's a very small boil.

To reduce the chances of having a boil recur, you need to have very good advice so you need to bathe regularly, don't share towels. A boil is caused a bacteria called Staphylococcus aureus, and basically it's in about 10-20% of patients so it just colonizes the skin quite normally and it's nothing to worry about. What happens is then if the skin is rubbed, or is there a small break in the skin, and that's when the staph aureus can enter the skin and cause an infection.

So you need to make sure that often the staph aureus is in the groin area, around the buttock area, in the armpit, in the nose, so you need to make sure to wash your hands regularly and keep your nails short. Just good general hygiene. You can use, if you do have a boil, you can also use an antiseptic wash like Dermol, that's got chlorhexidine in it, and that can reduce the spread of staph aureus, and reduce recurrence.

You also need to make sure you're not diabetic, and that you haven't any problems with your immune system, or you haven't got anemia or an iron deficiency, because that can also make you prone to boils. And also you need to make sure that you don't carry or spread the staph aureus amongst your family as well, so there you need to have good hygeine. Sometimes if it's not responding to antibiotic tablets, then the GP will need to take a swab of the pus to see if its got something called methicillin-resistant staph aureus or MRSA, and then other antibiotics will need to be given instead.

If that doesn't work, if it becomes an abscess, then it might need surgical drainage so refer to a hospital. So thank you for listening to me, and I hope that's been helpful in how to prevent and treat a bo.