Blisters are bumps that appear on the skin that have been rubbed. The skin on your feet may blister after walking in shoes that are too tight or blisters may appear on your hands after using a hoe all day. If you have blisters, you need to know how to treat them at home so they can heal quickly and prevent infection. However, there may be times when you need to seek medical attention for large or infected blisters.
Method 1 of 4: Treating Small Blisters at Home
Step 1. Wash the blister area with soap and water
If you have blisters, no matter how small, make sure the area is always clean. That's to make sure the blister doesn't get infected if it bursts.
Step 2. Aerate small blisters
Small blisters that haven't burst will go away on their own after a few days. You don't need to break or bandage it. Just blow it out as often as possible.
- If the blisters are on the feet, wear slippers at home so that the blisters go away on their own.
- If the blister is on your hand, there's no need to wear gloves or a bandage as long as you're not using your hand to do anything that could cause the blister to burst or become infected.
Step 3. Protect the blisters that don't burst
When you leave the house or start activities, protect the blister from bursting. Cover it with a loose bandage or donut bandage.
Donut bandages can be purchased at pharmacies. This type of bandage creates a barrier around the blister, but allows the skin to breathe
Method 2 of 4: Treating Large Blisters at Home
Step 1. Gently wash the blister area
Clean the blister and the area around it with warm, soapy water. Make sure your hands are also clean as blisters can easily become infected.
Clean gently. Try to keep the blister intact until you can burst it in a controlled way
Step 2. Puncture the blister with a sterile needle, if necessary
You may choose to drain the fluid from a large, painful blister to reduce pain and discomfort. Sterilize sewing needles with a cotton ball that has been moistened with alcohol. Then, stick the needle into the edge of the blister.
You will not feel pain when the blister is pricked because the skin bubble has no nerves
Step 3. Drain the liquid after puncture
Press the blister with your finger. The liquid will flow from the puncture hole. Keep pressing until all the liquid comes out. Use a cotton ball to wipe the liquid.
Draining the fluid is a sterile way to speed up recovery and reduce any pain you may feel from the swollen area
Step 4. Do not peel the skin
After the liquid is removed, there will be a thin skin remaining on the surface. These deflated blisters will protect the skin underneath from getting infected. You don't need to tear or cut it.
Step 5. Apply the ointment
Use a cotton swab to apply polymyxin B or bacitracin antibiotic ointment. This will prevent infection and keep the bandage from sticking to the skin.
There are people who are allergic to antibiotic ointment. If you are one of them, just apply petroleum jelly
Step 6. Bandage the cracked blister
Protect the blisters from becoming infected. Use a bandage or gauze to cover the blister area loosely. Make sure the tape doesn't touch the blister.
- Change the bandage once a day, or whenever it gets wet or soiled.
- If the blisters are on the feet, wear comfortable socks and shoes. Don't make it worse by walking in shoes that cause blisters.
- If you have blisters on your hands, wear gloves to protect them when you do daily chores like washing dishes or cooking. Don't repeat the work that caused you to blister.
Method 3 of 4: Seeking Medical Help
Step 1. Consider seeking medical attention
Blisters that are large, painful, and in hard-to-reach areas can be treated by a doctor. The doctor has a sterile instrument to remove the fluid in the blister. Thus, the area remains dry and sterile.
Step 2. See a doctor if the blister is infected
Infected blisters can cause bigger problems so you should visit a doctor to check and ask for advice on proper treatment. The doctor will clean and bandage the blister area and prescribe antibiotics. Signs of infection include:
- Red, itchy, and swollen skin near the area of the blister.
- Yellow pus oozes from under the skin of the blister that has deflated.
- The area around the blister is warm to the touch.
- There is a red line on the skin that originates from the area of the blister.
Step 3. Seek immediate treatment if you develop serious symptoms
In rare cases, infected blisters can cause more serious health problems as the infection spreads to other parts of the body. Seek immediate medical attention if you experience any of the following serious symptoms:
- High fever.
Method 4 of 4: Preventing Blisters
Step 1. Wear gloves when working with your hands
Blisters are usually caused by repetitive movements that cause friction. However, if you put on the gloves before starting the project, the friction created by the movement will be minimized and blisters can be prevented.
For example, holding a hoe for a long time can rub against the skin repeatedly. However, gloves will protect your hands and prevent blisters
Step 2. Wear comfortable shoes
New or ill-fitting shoes can cause blisters, especially on the tips of the toes and the back of the heel. To avoid blisters, make sure your shoes are the right size. Make new shoes more comfortable by wearing them often, but only briefly. Repeated use will make the shoe more comfortable without rubbing against the blisters.
Step 3. Protect areas of skin that are often rubbed
If you know a shoe is causing blisters or are about to undertake a project that you know will cause blisters on your hands, take protective measures. Wear pads on areas of your body where you think you will rub frequently to prevent blisters from forming.
- For example, put a bandage on the part of the hand that is often rubbed when working on projects or other repetitive movements.
- If you have a problem with blisters on your feet, wear two layers of socks to create extra cushioning.
- There are special pads in pharmacies that are made to protect the area of the foot that rubs against the shoe. These pads, called mole skins, are usually attached to the skin to prevent them from shifting.
Step 4. Reduce friction between the skins
Use lotion, powder, and petroleum jelly to reduce friction between the two parts of the skin rubbing against each other. For example, if your feet rub against each other, apply petroleum jelly to prevent friction and heat from causing blisters.