It's bad enough when you experience the pain and inflammation of a boil one time, but when they come back over and over again, it can be very troubling. Recurrent boils come and go over a period of time, you feel as though you are never really rid of them - they just keep coming back.
It Can Be A Family Affair
Boils are most frequently caused by a bacterium called Staphylococcus aureus. This type of bacteria is generally defeated by a healthy immune system and overall isn't problematic. As a matter of fact, we all have micro-organisms living in our intestines and on our skin that remain, for the most part, harmless. This is commonly known as colonization, and recurrent boils are colonized with Staphylococcus aureus bacteria. Since the bacteria are good at sticking to the skin, especially inside the nose, they can be carried around for a long time and passed around in families from one person to another. As a result, it is quite common for several members of a family to experience boils at the same time.
Some Causes of Recurring Boils
If a person's immune system is compromised, then the likelihood of infection increases. That is why we see boils on people with suppressed immune systems from diabetes, HIV, cancer, and other illnesses. There are some conditions other than a suppressed immune system that create a platform for recurring boils.
Boils favor damaged skin surfaces. That means that if a person has eczema or another condition that leaves certain areas of skin surface exposed to inflammation and infection, then boils will likely erupt in that place as well. Obesity is another cause for recurring boils. Obesity creates imbalance in the metabolic processes that can cause boils to develop repeatedly. Some diabetics carry a lot of excess weight and also suffer from boils.
Treatments for Recurring Boils
As with any kind of boil or skin eruption, it is possible to treat it at home. However, when boils recur it is wise to visit a physician. The doctor may prescribe a course of antibiotics to deal with the problem. If the antibiotics are ineffective, then opening and draining the boils may be the next course of action. Staphylococcus aureus is hard to completely remove from the body, so the likelihood of recurrence may prevail. Medication (Naseptin for ten days), and chlorhexidine showers or baths and hair wash daily for a couple of weeks is a recommended medical treatment. Keep linens and towels separate and wash clothing and bedding, as well as towels, in hot water.
Generally speaking, there are no long term negative effects of recurrent boils and they do, after a time of treatment, go away. A diet that is healthy and boosts the immune system is important to help ensure they stay away.