Should I Pop My Blister?
Author: jane baron
Every time I am unfortunate enough to get a blister, I am confronted by the age-old questions: to pop or not to pop. And which method is better for my feet in the long run?
Of course there is no one right answer. In the case of major blisters (from burns for examples), you should get to a medical facility as soon as possible and let medical professionals decide upon a course of action. But if your blister is the result of a something less dramatic - a new pair of high heels or a ten hour hike, for example - ask yourself the following questions. Are you in a great deal of pain? How big is the blister and is it getting worse? And do you have a sterile instrument with which to pop the blister?
If the blister is small and relatively painless, or if you do not have a sterile instrument, then your best course of action is to wait until the end of your day's activity. Sometimes a moleskin donut around the affected area can reduce the friction that caused the blister in the first place.
If your blister is extremely painful, or if the skin is in danger of being ripped, it is probably better to use a needle or pair of sharp twisters to pop the blister rather than letting nature take its course. Make sure the needle is sterilized (you can use a lighter, if you are out in the woods) before gently pricking the blister and draining the fluid. Above all else, avoid ripping or tearing the skin. You should never pop a blister with your fingers alone (i.e., ripping off the top layer of skin). The skin beneath blister is extremely sensitive, and you will probably find that exposing this skin is more painful than the blister you were suffering from in the first place.
Eventually all blisters acurea themselves. The blister disappears when the body reabsorbs the fluids. Thus you don't need to pop your blister - if you can stand to leave it alone. If you do decide to drain the fluid, be sure to wrap your blister (using a Band-Aid or moleskin) to protect the exposed skin as much as possible. Moleskin or even athletic tape can also be used to prevent blisters before they form.
Once you have finished with the day's activity, you may want to apply a disinfectant spray or cream to the popped blister to ensure that an infection does not develop.