Blisters Treatment Tips
Have you ever worn tight and uncomfortable shoes then had a blister on your foot? Or have you been busy working at the garden then had blisters on your hands after that? I'm sure you had, so read on...
Blisters, what are these?
Blisters are very common especially for those who are active in sports. However, not only sportsmen have this. Everyone is prone to blisters.
Blisters happen when two surfaces rub against each other. They commonly form on feet and hands, from constant pressure and rubbing of the skin. This happens quickly. You can acquire blisters on your feet that same day you wear poor-fitting or uncomfortable footwear. Blisters on your hands can develop when you forget to wear protective gloves when working in the garden or when using a shovel, hammer, driving for a long time or even riding your bike. Blisters are referred to as raised skin with fluid-filled bumps that resemble bubbles. Usually, the shape of blisters are circular. There is fluid that forms underneath or below the skin which may either be clear or in some instances, bloody.
What are the causative factors of blisters?
Infections are one of the causes of the development of blisters. Other factors may be an allergic reaction brought about by injury. Included are the following:
- radiation from the sun/ sunburn
- and electricity
- cold injuries from exposure to freezing or cold temperatures
- insect bites
- contact dermatitis
- contagious skin infections
- viral infections
Blisters may be uncomfortable but they are easy to prevent and heal. Usually, they just heal on their own in a short period of time. Still, it should always be kept clean and dry.
What should I do if I have a blister?
You should avoid breaking or "popping" a blister because the skin covering it helps protect it from making the blister worse. As much as possible, keep blisters intact. The unbroken skin of a blister provides protection or a natural barrier from bacteria, thus keeping it away from infection. It is better to leave blisters uncovered, but if something is rubbed against it, you can cover it with a loose, adhesive bandage or dressing until it heals. A large blister can be covered with a larger adhesive bandage with a porous, plastic-coated gauze pad. This should be able to absorb moisture and will allow the wound to breathe. The bandage or dressing should be changed at least once a day. While healing, avoid putting pressure on that area.
Home-remedies for blisters
Home remedies for blisters relieve itching and avoids further infection. Although blisters may heal spontaneously, first aid treatment must still be given so as to avoid infection. Below are some steps for the first-aid treatment of blisters:
- Wash the blister with mild soap and warm water.
- Ice pack or cold water can be applied to help reduce swelling and uneasiness
- The areas must be kept dry and clean
- Use a sterilized dressing or an adhesive bandage to be placed on a blister in case they bursts. This is to keep them clean or sanitized
- Any signs of infection must be observed
Signs of infection are:
- Redness around the blister
- Warm skin
- Increased pain
- Swollen lymph nodes at the area of the neck
Home remedies for blisters relieves itching and another way to do this is to keep the itchy area wet and cool by the application of a washcloth which has been soaked in ice or cold water.
Can blisters be painful?
In most cases, blisters are not that painful. As long as the irritant is avoided (example, blisters on the feet will not be painful as long as you stop wearing uncomfortable or tight shoes ). In severe cases - which are very rare, blisters can be very painful. This may even prevent you from walking or doing household chores.
The remedy for painful blisters or blisters that interfere with your daily work would be through puncturing or draining the fluid but still leaving the overlying skin of the blister intact. Below are steps on how to puncture a blister. Keep in mind, though, that if you have poor circulation or diabetes, you should consult your doctor before considering these self-treatment procedures.
- Sterilize a sharp, clean needle by wiping it with rubbing alcohol
- Using a mild soap and warm water, Wash your hands and the blister
- With rubbing alcohol or iodine, Swab the blister.
- Aiming for several spots near the blister's edge, use the sterilized needle to puncture the blister and let the fluid drain. The overlying skin should still be in place
- An ointment is then applied to the blister. Cover this with a gauze pad or bandage or you can leave it as it is.
- Apply more ointment or antibacterial creams (and a bandage, if needed) after several days. Using tweezers and scissors that have been sterilized in rubbing alcohol, cut away the dead skin.
In cases where blisters are infected, it is best to see your doctor for proper treatment. Also, other skin conditions or medical problems may resemble the symptoms of a blister so a physician should be consulted for proper diagnosis.
How can I prevent having blisters?
Common blisters are easily prevented. Protect your hands from getting blisters by wearing protective gears or gloves when doing yard work or heavy chores, and palm protectors called "grips" when doing gymnastics.
Wear comfortable footwear to protect the feet. Special athletic socks are available in the market. These have extra padding in critical areas. "Moleskin" is also advisable to be attached to the inside of your shoe where it might rub. You can attach this to the heel part where constant rubbing is expected.
As blisters may also be caused by some plants, avoid getting in contact with irritating kinds such as Oak, Sumac or Poison Ivy.
Also, avoid those who are infected with viral illnesses (genital herpes, chickenpox, cold sores and shingles), bacterial skin infections, and scabies mite infection. Infections like these may be contagious and cause blisters eventually.
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