Apple Cider Vinegar for Boils
Have you ever woken up with a painful, red bump on your skin? Do you seem to often develop boils under your arms or in places of friction on your body? Anyone who has had a boil knows they can be painful and embarrassing, but they are also dangerous sources of infection for your body. Using natural yet effective treatments can help you tackle a boil at home as soon as you see their appearance and keep the infection from spreading. Apple cider vinegar is a safe and effective method for treating this skin condition.
Boils are a somewhat mysterious and chronic skin condition that results in lumps that develop under your skin. Hidradenitis suppurativa, as it is also known, causes these painful and swollen areas to develop in areas where your skin rubs against itself, such as under your arms, in your groin, or between your buttocks. They can also develop in areas with active sweat and oil glands, such as the face and neck. When you get a boil on your eyelid, it is called a sty.
The site of the boil represents an infection within the hair follicle or oil gland. After several days, the lump turns from red to white as pus collects in the infected area. When boils become broken open, which happen frequently, you are left with an open wound that also becomes susceptible to infection. Boils often leave tunnels under your skin, as well, which can leave marks after it heals.
There is no single cause for boils to develop, but most result from an infection caused by the staphylococcal bacteria. Doctors and researchers understand that there is a link between boils and smoking as well as family history and diabetes. Anyone with a nick or cut on their skin is open to developing an infection. Those with immune system problems, poor nutrition, and poor hygiene are also more likely to develop boils.
Your doctor may recommend treating boils with medication, but several natural and alternative methods can work to reduce the size and appearance of these bumps that have fewer side effects and a lower cost. One excellent natural treatment for boils is apple cider vinegar.
Apple Cider Vinegar Benefits
Apple cider vinegar is an appropriate choice for treating boils for several reasons. The first is that, as a natural anti-inflammatory, this liquid can reduce the size of your boil while also help to alleviate the pain. Apple cider vinegar has long been used to treat these types of skin conditions because it effectively reduces redness, irritation, and inflammation that lead to pain and discomfort.
Another reason apple cider vinegar can help is that it has natural antibacterial properties that can protect your boil from secondary infection risks. Especially if your boil has opened, you should treat it with antibacterial products, like apple cider vinegar, to ensure not pathogens get into it and cause an infection to develop. Apple cider vinegar also works to kill fungal invaders, which are common in skin infections.
As a natural astringent, apple cider vinegar also works to dry out the boil and remove the excess liquid that forms inside the boil. With regular application, you can shrink the size of your boil quickly, relieve pain caused by stretching of the skin and help to treat the infection that is causing this skin condition.
Apple cider vinegar also works to balance your skin’s pH levels, which prevents future oiliness, infection, and dryness. And the acids in this liquid are excellent for breaking down the protective layer of skin that forms over the boil, allowing the vinegar to penetrate down into the infection and heal from within.
How to Use Apple Cider Vinegar
There are several methods and variations you can use for applying apple cider vinegar to your boil. We have listed several common and popular ones below, including combining the power of apple cider vinegar with other, natural compounds that can help to treat this skin condition.
Start by soaking a cotton square or ball in apple cider vinegar. Squeeze it to remove the excess liquid, then place the cotton directly on the boil for at least ten minutes. If your boil is in a hard to reach the area, you can use medical tape to secure it to the boil for the recommended time. Repeats this procedure four times per day, using a fresh cotton pad each time. If you have sensitive skin, you may want to dilute the vinegar with water before applying it to the cotton pad.
Because apple cider vinegar is effective at killing bacteria and other pathogens, you can use it internally to stop infection at its root. Many people take apple cider vinegar daily to keep them healthy, and this method also works well for treating conditions like boils.
Start with a glass of water. Stir in one tablespoon of vinegar, and drink this twice a day until the boil disappears. You can also add one teaspoon of manuka or raw honey to the mixture to enhance the taste and increase the antiseptic properties.
Combining the power of heat with apple cider vinegar can help to treat the pain and reduce the size of a boil. Start by following the instructions listed for direct application. Instead of merely holding the vinegar-soaked cotton on the site, though, wrap the area tightly with an elastic bandage, then place a heating pad or warm compress on the boil for at least one hour. After you have removed the compress and the cotton pad, rinse the area with cool water and pat dry. Repeat this several times per day until the boil heals.
There are many more effective ways to use apple cider vinegar to treat skin conditions such as boils. Other anti-inflammatory and antimicrobial ingredients, such as turmeric and lemon juice, can be combined with the power of apple cider vinegar to treat your infection. Adding apple cider vinegar to your bath can help treat and prevent skin infections easily, too. How have you used this natural treatment on your skin?
Mohanty, S., Ramesh, S., Muralidharan, N. P. (2017). Antimicrobial efficacy of apple cider vinegar against Enterococcus faecalis and Candida albicans: An in vitro study. Journal of Advanced Pharmacy Education & Research. 7 (2): 137-141.
Yagnik, D., Serafin, V., & J Shah, A. (2018). Antimicrobial activity of apple cider vinegar against Escherichia coli, Staphylococcus aureus and Candida albicans; downregulating cytokine and microbial protein expression. Scientific reports, 8(1), 1732.