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How to prevent and treat blisters



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To prevent a blister, you must prevent chafing.

Chafing is a painful skin irritation that occurs when body parts rub together or rub against clothing.

To prevent chafing, follow these tips from dermatologists:

To prevent blisters on your feet, wear nylon or moisture-wicking socks.

If wearing one pair of socks doesn’t help, try wearing two pairs of socks to protect your skin.

You should also make sure your shoes fit properly.

Shoes shouldn’t be too tight or too loose.

During physical activity, wear moisture-wicking, loose-fitting clothes.

Avoid clothes made of cotton, as cotton soaks up sweat and moisture,

which can lead to friction and chafing.

For problem areas, such as the feet or thighs, consider using adhesive moleskin

or other soft bandages.

Make sure the bandages are applied securely.

Another option is to apply petroleum jelly to problem areas.

This helps reduce friction when your skin rubs together or rubs against clothing.

Otherwise, you may get a blister.

If you do get a blister, be patient.

Most blisters heal on their own in one to two weeks.

To treat a blister, follow these tips from dermatologists:

Loosely cover the blister with a bandage.

Bring in the sides of the bandage so that the middle of the bandage is a little raised.

To protect blisters in pressure areas, such as the bottom of your feet, use padding.

Cut the padding into a donut shape with a hole in the middle and place it around the blister.

Then, cover the blister and padding with a bandage.

Try to avoid popping or draining a blister, as this could lead to infection.

However, if your blister is large and very painful, it may be necessary to drain the

blister to reduce discomfort.

To do this, sterilize a small needle using rubbing alcohol.

Use the needle to carefully pierce one edge of the blister,

which will allow some of the fluid to drain.

Once your blister has drained, wash the area with soap and water, and apply petroleum jelly.

Do not remove the “roof” of the blister, as this will protect the raw skin underneath as it heals.

Keep the area covered with a bandage or gauze until it heals.

As your blister heals, watch for signs of an infection.

If you notice any redness, pus, or increased pain or swelling, make an appointment to see

your doctor or a board-certified dermatologist.

To find a dermatologist in your area or learn more about taking care of your skin, visit aad.org.