Blisters are common, especially for those who do a lot of walking or running. However, many people don’t know how to care for their blisters properly. Here are some tips for healing any blisters you may already have, and how to avoid new ones from forming:
When You Can Remove a Blister
When blisters are small and do not show any signs of infection, it is perfectly okay to pop them. Simply disinfect the area and drain before the blister can become infected. Afterward, treat the wound with antibiotic ointment.
To safely pop your blister, you should:
- Thoroughly wash your hands and the blister with water and antibacterial soap. Then cleanse the blister with rubbing alcohol or iodine.
- Gently rub your blister to see if it will pop on its own. If it doesn’t, soak your feet in warm water for 30 minutes. Then try popping it again.
- Cover the wound with antibiotic ointment and a bandage.
When You it Shouldn’t Be Remove
If your blister shows signs of redness, swelling, soreness, pus, or even pain, do not pop it. All of these symptoms may indicate that you have a serious infection, or that your blister is actually a foot ulcer. Both of these conditions require the attention of a podiatrist to be treated properly. Foot ulcers, particularly for diabetics, can become gangrenous and result in the need for amputation. If you are experiencing any of these symptoms, or if you suspect that you have a foot ulcer, seek medical attention immediately.
Blisters are often sore while they are healing, so be sure to keep your feet comfortable. For example, put extra padding on the affected area, or use a healing ointment that also provides pain relief.
In order to prevent future blisters, make sure that you always wear shoes that fit properly. In addition, avoid going sock-less while wearing shoes like sneakers or boots, particularly if you’re going to be walking for a while. When you do wear socks, be sure that they are thick and provide extra padding in sensitive area like the back of the heel. Cotton socks absorb moisture, causing blisters when the wet socks rub against your feet.
People with foot abnormalities, such as bunions, often develop blisters. If you are constantly suffering from blistering feet, consult your foot care professional.
For more foot care tips and tricks, consult the experts at Superior Foot & Ankle Care Center with all of your podiatric questions and concerns.