Blisters are small sacs filled with clear fluid known as serum. They may develop anywhere in the body, and they resemble tiny bubbles. A blister that is filled with blood or pus, is most likely to be infected or inflamed. In most cases, blisters are formed when the skin is subjected to continuous friction or pressure. That is why, most people get one or more blisters when they wear a new pair of shoes, or continue wearing poor-fitting shoes. Other causes include burns (caused by heat, electricity, chemical, etc.,), allergic reaction (insect bites), and infections.
Treating Blisters At Home
☞ It is best to leave blisters that are small, and less or not painful to heal on their own. With time, the fluid will be reabsorbed by the body, and the damaged area of the skin (epidermis) will dry and peel off naturally. In this case, it is recommended to cover the blister with a moleskin pad. Cut the pad into a donut shape and place it on the blister, leaving the central area open. Keep the skin clean and dry as far as possible. This would help the moleskin to stay for a longer time.
☞ Large blisters that cause a lot of pain, and those that occur in a weight-bearing area may cause severe discomfort. Such blisters can be drained at home with the help of the following steps:
✔ The first step is to wash your hands thoroughly with soap and water.
✔ You can use a needle to drain the blister. It is extremely important to get the needle sterilized before using it. Wipe the needle thoroughly with rubbing alcohol. This makes it fully sterilized, and cuts chances of any infection. Also, it is advisable to use a new needle for such procedures.
✔ Using the needle, gently puncture the edge of the blister. The fluid will drain, and to improve the flow, you can gently push the fluid towards the exit. Never pull off the dead skin above the blister. This very skin acts as a natural bandage that helps healing the injured site.
✔ Pat the blister site dry using a clean gauge, and apply an antibiotic cream. Now you have to get a cover for the blister to keep it from getting infected. You can use a gauze pad and to keep it in place you can use a waterproof adhesive tape. Do not wrap the tape too tightly as it may interfere with the blood supply to that region.
✔ Exposing a blister to air also helps in speeding up its recovery. So while you are at home uncover the blister and let it breathe.
☞ It is advisable to change the dressing everyday, and especially when the blister has occurred in a place in the body which perspires or is most likely to get wet.
☞ If your blister has occurred in a place that remains covered, then wear loose-fitting clothes and those which are made of cotton fabric. Such natural fibers allow the skin to breathe and thus they help the blister to heal quickly.
☞ Mouth blisters occur mostly from drinking hot food or liquid such as pizza, coffee, tea, soup, etc. Such very hot items tend to burn the delicate skin of the mouth and this results in blisters. The best way to treat these blisters is to let them heal on their own. Medicines are not usually required in this case. Gargle with a solution of salt and water. This will prevent the risk of any infection. Drinking aloe vera juice also helps in healing such blisters faster. Avoid foods which are salty or spicy.
☞ Treat blisters on lips with ice to prevent infection. You can use lemon balm or mint extract to speed up the recovery. Application of cornstarch paste on the blisters also works well. Most importantly, such blisters should be kept clean and uncontaminated.
If you decide to leave a blister as it is, then all you have to do is to wait until it gets resolved on its own. On the other hand, if the blister cracks open, then extreme care must be taken in order to prevent any infection. However, if the same is taking a longer time to heal, and becoming more painful, then you should see a doctor at the earliest.
Disclaimer: The information provided in this article is solely for educating the reader. It is not intended to be a substitute for the advice of a medical expert.