Boil under arm is a condition known to affect about 1-4% of the population. In fact, research has it that if you’ve had boils in your armpit on more than five occasions, it is very likely to be hidradenitis. Normally, if you have this condition you will develop about two painful boils a month, each of which takes about a week to go away, although some people the problem may be much worse. Those who are severely affected will develop boil under arm all the time.
Hidradenitis suppurativa itself is not an infection unless some disease causing organisms takes advantage of it. It is only when the site has been infected that the condition becomes contagious. In many cases, this condition occurs when there is a problem with hair follicle in your armpit or sweat glands. This is usually painful since in every movement of your hand you will feel disrupted.
Boil under armpit symptoms
Once the boil start developing in the armpit, it will be felt as a hard lump which may be about half an itch in size. The lump becomes softer, larger and more painful, and finally a pocket of pus is formed on top of the boil. In cases of severe infection, you will experience the following symptoms:
- The skin around the boil becomes infected and may turn red, painful, warm, and swollen.
- More boils may start to develop around the original one.
- You may develop a fever.
- Your Lymph nodes may become swollen.
- Your armpits start to itch.
- The boil may fail to drain
If your condition keeps worsening, you need to see your doctor to avoid further infection and reduce the irritation.
What are the Causes of Boils in the armpit?
There are many conditions that will result to a boil in the armpit. Most of these conditions are just from our careless ways of handling issues. A boil in the armpit can be very painful and may result in many problems enough stop you from doing anything with your hands at your disposal. A condition known as Folliculitis in which the hair follicles get infected with bacteria is the predominant cause of underarm boils. Let as look at some of the causes of boil under arm.
Causes of boils in the armpit
This is a condition where by hair follicles are infected by a bacteria organism called staphylococcus aureus. The hair follicle may be infected due to poor hygiene. Sometimes due to excessive sweating the ducts that connect the sweat glands to the hair follicles can get blocked by the residue left behind after the sweat dries up. This residue increases chances of infections resulting in boil in the armpits.
Other cause of underarm infection leading to boils is the sebaceous glands present in the underarm region. Here also when the tract connecting the gland and the hair follicle gets congested with impurities.
- Use of deodorants
Some deodorants have contents that may irritate the skin. For those people who are almost allergic to everything, if you use deodorants that have ingredients that can cause allergic reaction to your skin, you are likely to get a boil under arm pit. On the other hand, there are some products that are just of poor quality and when used they results to problems on the skin or in the body. Such kinds of products should be avoided.
Research has revealed that people with stress tend to develop more bumps on the skin. This is because stress propagates hormones in the body causing them to rise against their normal level. Change in hormonal level is known to facilitate production of excess oil on the skin which in turn results to formation of bumps on the body. It is very important to avoid stress at all times. In case you are stressed, keep yourself active to avoid the problems associated with it.
- Hidradenitis suppurativa underarm
Hidradenitis suppurativa or HS is another disease associated with sweat glands. If you have this condition, it will trigger the inflammation of apocrine glands as a result of clogging and formation of cysts after an infection. This could cause you to develop a boil under your armpits.
Hidradenitis suppurativa is treatable, if you have the condition, you could take same over the counter antibiotics or anti-inflammatory injections. Depending on the extent of the cyst formed, your doctor may prescribe draining or removing the cyst by surgery
- Boil under armpits diabetes
Boil under armpit can also be caused by diabetes. Diabetes is a complex medical condition that can affect your entire body. When you have diabetics, the body can’t maintain healthy glucose level in the blood. Glucose is a form of sugar that is the main source of energy for your body. If your body has unhealthy levels of glucose in the blood, it can lead to long and short term health complication.
- Armpit ingrown hair
This is most likely as a result of poor shaving methods. When the skin hair is growing, it may fail to break through the skin, it therefore grows sideways into the skin resulting into an ingrown hair. Though common in people with tight-curly hair, an ingrown hair is more likely to because by hair removal.
As you shave the hair in your armpits, the sharp edge grows back into the skin leading to inflammation and formation of rash in your armpits. Poor shaving is the main cause of ingrown hair, otherwise other factors such as waxing and having a dry or too much oil on your skin.
- Underarm boils after shaving
Improper shaving techniques can make you develop rashes on your underarms. Poor shaving causes irritation due to damage of the skin, due to scratching or cut form the shaving razor. The small bumps formed after shaving can be aggravated by sweating and body sprays and deodorants. The bumps formed are usually small in size and could cause slight itching which may last up to a few hours or days. When the bumps are filled with pus and other dead tissue it may develop into a boil under armpit.
Continuous scratching can easily result in an infection. The hair follicles get more irritated and can lead to swelling or serous itching. You would use some home remedies to soothe the skin and reduce the irritation. Common plants such as aloe Vera can be helpful.
- Breast cancer sign
Breast cancer is an abnormal growth of breast cells. According to research, there are more than 100 types of cancer including skin, lung cancer, prostate cancer, lymphoma and many others.
Symptoms vary depending on the causes of the cancer. Swelling can develop around your collarbone and armpits as a result of breast cancer. This is due to the spread of the cancer to the lymph glands in this area of the body. The armpits may develop boils which are pus filled causing you a lot discomfort.
- Boil under armpit HIV
There exists some possibility that the boil in your armpit could be as a result of HIV infection. This is a condition known as acute retroviral syndrome or primary HIV. It is the primary stage of infection and last just until the body has created antibodies to fight the infection.
- Poor armpit hygiene
Boils caused due to poor hygiene is due to the dirt trapped within the hair follicle in the armpits. Failure to regularly bathe causes excess dirt, sweat and bacteria to collect under the armpit, this can cause a painful boil to appear in the armpit.
The boil will be red or dark in color and is usually sensitive to touch. According to better health, armpits boil may also occur due to buildup of dead skin cells and bacteria on the skin under the arm. If the armpit has a cut, mainly due to shaving, the bacteria may spread into the armpits causing a boil under arm to develop.
Do Boils Itch as they heal?
There are some cases you’ve ever felt that irritating urge to scratch a healing boil. It is sometimes surprising why wounds itch when they are healing. It is very true that boil wounds do itch as they heal. This can be frustrating to deal with, especially when you don’t know the reason behind it.
Understanding why boils itch as they heal
Many theories have been developed on why your skin will itch as the healing process is ongoing. Some researchers suggest that stress is one potential explanation. This occurs due to special nerve fibers in the skin. They react when there is an irritation – whether that is caused by something simple or more complex. Another possible explanation for the reaction is histamine.
They have gone further to agree that boil wound itches when histamine is released by the cells. This is a response to a physical trauma or the introduction of bacteria. Histamine is a substance produced by the body that causes an allergic type of reaction when released. This explains the itchy skin one can experience when dealing with a boil wound.
If you earlier had boil under arm, histamine is crucial to the body’s healing process, as many studies have shown. The body releases histamine to trigger cells that help close the wound and create new tissue. This occurs during the second phase of healing of the boil under arm.
Why do I keep Getting Boils
As we have stated above, boil under armpit most commonly develop in an infected hair follicle, especially in areas where there is sweat or friction. You can keep getting boils if you are obese, have other skin conditions such as eczema, a weak immune system, or an underlying condition like diabetes. Close contact with a person who has a boil can also increase your risk of getting boils although in a very minimal rate.
For you to reduce your risk of getting boils there are some of the simple things you can practice on daily routine. They include the following:
- Use antibacterial soap
- Wash your hands thoroughly, especially after touching infected body areas
- Clean cuts and wounds thoroughly and cover them with a sterile dressing
- Use a separate flannel and towel, don’t share these
- Wash sheets, pillowcases and towels at a high temperature
- Disinfect high-traffic areas like doorknobs and light switches
- Avoid saunas, gyms and swimming pools when you have open cuts
- Eat well and exercise to support your immune system.
Boil in armpit with no Head
Boils that have no head are usually very painful as the pain is usually deep in the skin tissue. They are usually felt with a sharp throbbing pain under the skin. For a deep armpit boil with no head or which do not pop, you should strive to get it come up to the skin. In this case you can treat it with a warm compress at least twice a day until it comes to the head. If the boil is opened a little bit, but nothing seems to come out, use plenty of Epsom salt in a hot bath. The salt will help drain out any pus.
Boil under Armpit Draining
Draining a boil helps it to start healing first. If it is left with pus, this may take a while before you start seeing any changes on it. Also, for deep boils in the skin that have no head, draining will be necessary since the area will be so painful enough not to allow you do anything. For it to be done in a good way, draining of boil under armpit should be done by a professional person. There are other things to try first, but sometimes, a boil just has to be drained.
If you really want to do this at home, you can first start by heating the boil with a warm compress to allow it come to the head. For you to know if it is ready to be drained the head becomes fully whitish which means there is collection of pus.
The heat gets things going, increases the antibody-carrying blood supply, and helps the infection either go away or come to a head. You may also see a slight tenting close to the middle of the redness. That’s where the pus is trying to make its way to the surface to drain out. Sometimes it may need help by incising and draining. Never squeeze the area. You’re very likely to spread the infection.
How to Get Rid of Boil under Armpit
The boils will develop in your armpits because these regions are warm, moist and contain large numbers of hair follicles. There are several possible treatments for the underarm boils of hidradenitis suppurativa, and you may wish to try several before finding one that is the most effective for you.
Many patients opt to use natural methods of controlling the symptoms, which are often more effective on a long term basis than antibiotics. The problem with using antibiotics is that the bacteria will become resistant to them, making it even more difficult to treat the condition in the future. Stronger antibiotics would need to be used, normally in conjunction with other medications such as corticosteroids, which will help to reduce the swelling for a short term basis.
If you suffer from boil under arm as a result of hidradenitis suppurativa, then there are a number of methods that you could try in order to manage your condition more effectively.
- Wash the affected areas with an antiseptic substance – you can either buy an antiseptic solution or make up a dilution of tea tree oil. This will help to reduce the number of bacteria in the area.
- If you have large abscesses or sinus tracts that leak pus, then it might be a good idea to drain to minimize leakage throughout the day. Hold a warm cloth over the boils to encourage the pus to drain out. Once the pus has started to flow out, the pressure and the pain will be reduced.
- After this, use a substance such as aloe vera to promote healing of these areas. Aloe vera is good and has been used to prevent infection and encourage healing, and the reason it is so popular is because it is effective
Boil under armpit won’t go away
Most boils usually heal with home remedies or a visit to your doctor. Rarely, the bacteria causing boils in armpits can get into the bloodstream. A recurring boil or one that won’t go away or keeps coming back is a problem.
If you have a boil more than five occasions in your armpit, it is likely to be hidradenitis. You’re likely to develop painful boils, two in a month. It can take each about a week or to go. In severe cases, the boils may be present all the time.
Even though most boils go away after a warm compress and antibiotics, it is possible for them to reappear. The main reason for this condition is failure to treat the underlying cause of the boil leaving you prone to future attack of the same infection.
Boil under Armpit Home Remedy
Self-diagnosing can sometimes be dangerous. You need to see your doctor as soon as you notice the boil in your armpits is not going away with simple home treatments. The following home remedies will only help reduce the itching and pain caused by the boil.
- Warm compress
Applying a warm compress to the boil increases the circulation of blood and helps activate the body’s immune response this brings antibodies and white blood cells to the infected area of your armpit.
Simply dip a rag in mixture of warm water and olive or salt and gently rub your armpits
- Pop to drain the boil
You should not pop the boil if it is still small and firm. Most boils are likely to drain on their own with continuous hot soak. Draining the pop can lead to prolonged infection and inflammation. You only pop the boil when it becomes soft and develops a visible pustule. You can do this with your figures or with the help a sharp object.
- Olive oil
Olive oil is rich in vitamin E and antioxidants, which help soothe your skin and reduce itching. You could also use a combination of olive oil and honey. Simply rub the mixture a few times daily until the rash heal completely. Castor oil and coconut oil also help heal rashes naturally. A combination of vitamin E oil and liver oil is thus a good remedy.
- Aloe Vera
It has anti-inflammatory, emollient, antibacterial and antifungal properties. It’s excellent for treating number of skin ailments including boil under arm. Apart from healing, it also soothes the skin, relieves itching and reduces redness.
Apply it on the affected area and leave it on for at least 20 minutes, and then rinse it off. If you do not have fresh aloe Vera gel, you can buy aloe Vera gel or extract from any retail store near you.
Due to the soothing and anti-inflammatory properties of oatmeal, it is good for alleviating skin irritation and inflammation. It’s thus excellent for rashes caused by eczema, sun burn, chicken pox and allergies. What you need to do is;
Combine one-half cup of blended oatmeal, a quarter cup of milk powder and two tea spoon of honey. Put this mixture in a muslin cloth, tie and place it in a bath tab filled with warm water. Soak in the milky bath water for 20 minutes.
- Armpit boils: http://www.embarrassingproblems.com/problem/armpit-boils
- Boil under armpits : http://www.homeremediesforall.com/how/boils-under-armpits.html
- Underarm boils in armpit: http://howtogetridofwartshome.com/underarm-boils-in-armpit-treatment/
- What causes armpit boils: http://www.livestrong.com/article/264779-what-are-the-causes-of-armpit-boils/
- Why wounds itch when they are healing: http://skincare.lovetoknow.com/Why_Do_Wounds_Itch_When_They_Are_Healing