These little pesky infections below the skin are not only unattractive, but they can be quite painful too. There are a number of different types of boils (abscesses) such as hidradenitis suppurativa, carbuncles and cystic acne. The type of boil is dependent on how it forms. Boils result from a number of factors such as:
•Foreign matter that is lodged under the skin. This can happen when a splinter becomes embedded in the skin.
•Closed pores result in cystic acne. This type of boil tends to affect teenagers. Unlike acne, this boil affects skin tissues that are deeper than the surface of the skin.
•Ingrown hair is responsible for hidradenitis suppurativa. This type of boil is frequently found under the arms or groin area. It often affects the faces of African American men due to ingrown bread.
Prevention and Treatment
While not completely preventable, many types of boils can be avoided by practicing good hygiene. In other cases, medication can be prescribed to prevent a reoccurrence of abscesses such as hidradenitis suppurativa.
Treating boils takes a combination approach in some cases. For the simplest types of boils, home treatment is best choice. For small boils that are just forming applying a heat compress to the area is recommended. Some boils have to be lanced to drain the affected area and promote healing. Lancing or piercing the boil is not helpful for small boils that are not well formed.
Surgical intervention or lancing is most common with hidradenitis suppurativa. This can also be done for cystic acne. Sometimes scarring can be so bad that plastic surgery is required.
The good thing is that most types of boils are harmless even if somewhat painful. Persons with certain types of illnesses such as diabetes should get medical assistance if they develop a boil.