Podiatrist in San Leandro, CA
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By Dr. Michael Stein
November 05, 2014
Category: Blisters

Proper Blister CareBlisters are common among world-class athletes—Giants pitcher Tim Lincecum was limited by one on his finger through parts of last season, and tennis star Kei Nishikori dealt with one on his foot en route to making the U.S. Open final in September. However, they can happen to anyone. If you’re out and about—say at Pleasanton’s downtown farmer’s market on Saturday mornings—the last thing you need is a foot blister slowing you down. Fortunately, a little blister care can help keep you on your feet.

How you care for your blister will depend on whether it has popped or not. Popping and even careful draining increases the risk of infection, so if the bump is still intact, the goal is to keep it that way.

For an un-popped blister, you just want to try to protect it. If it’s in a high-pressure, weight-bearing area, try a donut-shaped moleskin. Otherwise, cover with an adhesive bandage (if it’s small enough) or breathable gauze.

If the blister has already popped, you need to take some additional steps to try to prevent infection. Clean the area with just gentle soap and water—no alcohol, iodine, or hydrogen peroxide. After that, smooth the skin flap (you want to leave it as intact as possible), apply an antibiotic ointment, then cover with gauze or a sterile bandage.

You should consider draining the blister only when it is simply too painful to deal with—due to size or location. After washing both your hands and the affected area with soap and water, take a sterilized needle (use rubbing alcohol) and carefully puncture it near its edge. Press gently on the bump to drain the fluid. Once that’s done, follow the steps above for a popped blister.

If you have diabetes or any other condition that increases your risk of infection, or if you notice any signs of infection—white or yellow pus, for example—call Foot Doctor of the East Bay. We are the Bay Area’s foot and ankle experts, and we’ll help you with any blister care you may require. We can even help you with shoe recommendations or custom orthotics that can relieve the pressure causing your blisters in the first place. Give us a call at (510) 483-3390 to set up an appointment at our San Leandro, Pleasanton, or Los Gatos office and see what we can do for you.

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