Boils are a red lump on the skin that is sore and contains pus. This lump arises from a bacterial infection that triggers inflammation of the hair follicle, the hole where hair grows. Body parts that are most often exposed to ulcers are the face, neck, armpits, shoulders, buttocks, and thighs. This happens because the parts often experience friction and sweating. In addition, boils can also grow on the eyelids.
Symptoms of Boils
The main symptom of boils is the appearance of red bumps on the skin. In the early stages, the size of the ulcer is usually small and then accompanied by:
- The skin around the lump is red, swollen, and warm to the touch. This indicates that the infection has spread to surrounding skin.
- The lump grows larger and contains pus.
- White dots form at the top of the bump.
- Causes fever.
- Keep growing until it reaches the diameter above 5 cm and feels very sick.
- Grow more than one fruit in the same location. This type is known as boil or carbuncle boils, and this condition is a more serious infection.
- It grows inside the nose, in the face, or in the spine.
- Not healed for more than 14 days.
- Frequent recurrence.
- Having problems with the immune system or in medications that disrupt the immune system.
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Causes of Boils
The main cause of ulcers is Staphylococcus aureus bacteria. These bacteria can be found on the skin and inside the human nose without causing any problems. Infection occurs when bacteria enter into the hair follicle through a scratch or insect bite.
Ulcers can happen to anyone and there are several factors that allegedly can increase a person's risk of developing this disease. These risk factors include:
- Direct contact with the patient. The risk of this infectious disease will increase if someone is often in direct contact with the patient, for example, because they live in a house.
- Cleanliness is not maintained, both personal hygiene and the environment.
- Have a weakened immune system, for example because of HIV, chemotherapy , or diabetes.
- Experiencing skin problems, such as acne or eczema skin .
Diagnosis of ulcers
Doctors can usually recognize boils easily from their characteristics. If the ulcer does not heal with a treatment that has been done or recurring, usually the doctor will take a sample of pus to be examined in the laboratory.
Laboratory tests are useful for knowing which types of antibiotics are effective in treating ulcers. This is because some kinds of bacteria can become immune to certain types of antibiotics.
Ulcers can generally be cured with simple steps at home and rarely require medical treatment by a doctor. Some simple ways we can do to speed healing are:
- Compressing boils with warm water. Do it at least three times a day. This step will reduce the pain as well as pus pus to gather at the top of the bump.
- Cleaning broken boils with gauze with alcohol and anti-bacterial soap. Do not forget to cover the broken boils with sterile gauze.
- Replace bandages as often as possible, two to three times a day.
- Do not forget to wash your hands with water and soap before and after treating ulcers.
Patients can take painkillers or analgesics to reduce pain, for example paracetamol or ibuprofen .
To cope with large boils or carbuncles, it usually takes action by a doctor. The doctor will dissect the ulcers to excrete pus. Sometimes a drain is required, if the pus can not be excreted, for example in a sufficiently deep infection. An antibiotic drug may also be prescribed for patients to treat ulcers that:
- Accompanied by severe infection.
- Frequent recurrence.
- With fever.
- With complications.
Complications of Boils
Bacteria from ulcers or carbuncles can sometimes spread to other parts of the body. When spread in the skin layer will arise cellulitis, spread to the bone ( osteomyelitis ), heart (endocarditis), or even to the whole body ( sepsis ). In addition, ulcers can also leave scars.
Prevention of Boils
Ulcers can be prevented by maintaining personal hygiene. Here are some ways that can be applied to maintain personal hygiene:
- Not sharing personal items with others. These personal items include towels, shavers, and clothing.
- Get used to wash hands regularly with soap.
- If there are injuries, either scratches, tear wounds, or cut wounds, immediately clean and cover with sterile plaster until the wound healed.
- Regular exercise and eating healthy foods to increase endurance.