How To Treat Blister on Your Feet Safely

A blister is a small pocket of fluid contained in the outer layers of the skin. A blister is caused by irritation of the skin from excessive rubbing, burning, freezing, chemicals toxic to the skin, or infection. It can contain blood, serum, or pus within it. If you are athlete you are probably very familiar with blisters. They commonly appear at places that get repeated irritation. The location of blisters depends on the activity you are doing. If you are a golfer, weight lifter or baseball player the most common places to get blisters are on your hands, a skier or snowboarder on your shins or lower legs, and a runner or walker on your feet.

Once people realize that they have a blister the most common issue is not knowing what to do. Do I pop the blister or do I leave it alone? Some people say don't pop a blister because it can get infected and it will just get worse. Other people say pop a blister as soon as it forms otherwise it will keep getting bigger. I can see why there is confusion as to pop or not pop a blister because there is a little truth in both of these statements. As far as what a trained health care professional will tell you, such as a podiatrist, it is better to pop the blister, but doing it in a clean and sterile manner. If you need to drain a blister because you are going to continue the type of activity that caused the blister, follow the following guidelines to do it safely

1) Gather the following supplies: washcloth, soap, sterile needle, gauze, antibacterial ointment, Band-Aid

2) Clean the area over and around the blister with a washcloth, soap and water.

3) Carefully hold the sterile needle in your dominant hand and gauze on your non-dominant hand. Puncture the blister on the side then immediately apply pressure over the blister with a gauze pad until you have drained all the liquid from the blister. Be sure to leave the �??roof �?? of the blister intact.

4) Properly dispose of the needle and gauze pad.

5) Apply a thin layer of topical antibacterial ointment to the area where the blister was located.

6) Put a Band-Aid over the area to help prevent infection.

7) Figure out what caused the blister to form and find a way to stop the irritation from continuing. This will prevent additional blisters from forming.

Blisters are common occurrences, especially in active people. Most blisters are easy to treat but if you feel uncomfortable treating it on your own, or think that your blister may be infected, contact your local podiatrist for a professional opinion.
Dr. Andrew Schneider
Dr. Andrew Schneider is a podiatrist and foot surgeon at Tanglewood Foot Specialists in Houston, TX.
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