Do you suffer from Blisters on your Feet?
I think all of us have suffered from bad blisters on your feet at one point in time.
A blister is a small fluid bubble that is seen under the surface of the skin.
They are filled with clear fluid called serum, and are usually caused by rubbing, irritation or pressure on the skin.
This article will briefly cover what foot blisters are, how they are formed and what can be done to treat them.
What is a blister?
As mentioned above, a blister is a small pocket of fluid that is lined by a thin membrane and is seen just under the surface of the skin.
Blisters can be very painful at times and can range in size and depth.
While in most cases blisters are filled with clear fluid, on some occasions, they can be filled with blood or pus, implying that it is infected.
What are the causes of blisters?
There are a number of causes which have been listed below –
- Trauma – This can occur due to friction at different areas due to tight fitting or ill-fitting footwear, protruding seams in footwear or excessive movement of the foot in the shoe.
- Heat injury from a scald or burn.
- Bacterial and fungal infections
- Allergic reaction – This can be due to a number of agents such as detergents and similar chemicals, or allergies to specific materials such as latex.
- Other medical conditions – These include skin conditions such as Pemphigus and Bullous Pemphigoid, to name a couple.
Most cases of blisters are diagnosed on clinical examination.
They bear a classic appearance that any doctor or podiatrist will be able to identify.
How to Treat Blisters
In most cases, blisters will heal naturally.
However, there are certain important measures to adopt to ensure this happens and they do not get infected. Your podiatrist will advise you the following –
- DO NOT pierce them – Blisters are meant to protect the skin underneath to allow it to heal. Squeezing and prodding the can result in breaking the blister, allowing a point of entry for an infection, which will only make things worse.
- Cover with a protective dressing and remove pressure – Blisters that have occurred due to friction may need a dressing to keep them covered up. Ensure this is soft and not too tightly placed. Try to remove as much pressure from the area as possible by changing footwear, adjusting lacing techniques and using accommodative padding.
- DO NOT peel dead skin – Once the blister has popped naturally, there is always the urge to pick on the edges to pull off any dead skin. Avoid this. Doing so can risk tearing the surrounding skin, slowing healing and again increasing the chance of developing an infection at the site.
- In case you have a blood blister, keep the area clean. If necessary, apply ice packs on the blisters to help control the pain.
- Antibiotics – These can be prescribed if the blister is infected. In some cases, the blister may require draining or aspiration by your Podiatrist or Doctor.
Preventing foot blisters
Simple measures can ensure that foot blisters do not develop.
Wear comfortable, well fitted footwear. Keep feet clean and dry when exercising and use preventative taping measures where required. Ensure you are using appropriate footwear and socks for the activities you are undertaking.
Protect the skin from heat and take the right precautions when handling hot liquids or materials. Finally, seek advice from your podiatrist should you have any queries.
Further Resources for Blisters on Feet
- Better Health Channel Victoria on Blisters
- How to Treat and Avoid Blisters by Women’s Health Mag
- Internet Sports Injury Clinic on Blisters
Conclusion on Blisters
Blisters on your feet are a common condition that can cause a fair amount of pain. Podiatrists are trained in management and advising on prevention of blisters, so make sure you see them today should you have any questions.