06 Feb How to Treat Blisters by APRC
How to Treat Blisters
Blisters, especially those on the feet, are caused by increased friction from rubbing, most commonly from shoes. They first start out as a burning, red soars and then puff up with fluid. There are different types of blisters and are not all treated the same. One type of blister can be filled with clear fluid and the other is filled with blood.
If the blister is not painful, leave it alone or let it pop on its own. If you are having pain when you walk, the safest way to treat the area would be to see a podiatrist. Otherwise you risk infection from an unsterilized needle if this is done at home. The fluid filled blisters would be cleansed, popped and drained with a sterile needle, then covered with an antibiotic cream and a bandage. The roof of the blister would be kept intact to help prevent infection. The blood filled blisters, unlike the fluid filled blisters would be cleansed, drained and de-roofed. This area is then treated like an open wound and would require daily dressing changes.
The best way to help prevent blisters is if it is caused by new shoes would be to wear the new shoes in your house, with possibly two pairs of socks to reduce the friction on your skin until the shoes stretch out. Make sure your shoes fit you properly, at least a thumbs width between your longest toe and the end of the shoe. If one foot is bigger than the other, you can purchase lambs wool to help fill in the extra room by the toes or a heel liner in the back of the shoe. Mole skin can be placed in the high friction areas either on the shoe or the skin itself. A regular band-aid or water based gel pad dressing ( “second skin” by Spenco) could be used on the skin instead of mole skin. For those who prefer organic methods aloe vera juice, hypericum ointment or tea tree oil could be placed on the skin to help reduce friction.
If blisters are caused from friction due to a mechanical issue, for instance, flatfeet, the treatment would consist of a way to correct the mechanical issue like with orthotics or anti-motion sneakers. If your feet are itchy and you notice blisters in the area, in this case blisters are caused by a fungus or a type of athletes foot. To treat blisters related to athletes foot you would need to treat the area with an anti-fungal medication either over the counter or prescription for at least one month. Other types of blisters include fracture blisters which can occur in area where a bone is broken due to swelling, from a burn or an allergic reaction.
In conclusion a blister can form for several reasons and it is important to treat not only the blister but the cause of the blister. It is important to use sterile techniques to decrease the risk of infection and to be evaluate by a physician.
Vincenza Mineo DPM, AACFAS