Boils are an infection that gets its start in an oil gland or hair follicle. The infection begins with the introduction of staphylococcal bacteria, commonly known as staph. Medical professionals refer to boils as a furnicle or as an abscess. The first indication of a boil is a red lump on the skin. Under the lump the abscess is filling with pus. After four to seven days a white or yellow head begins to emerge as the pain intensifies. The small red lump turns into a large nasty looking infection. Some boils have more than one head, which is called a carbuncle. Many boils can be treated with at home remedies. Several natural remedies, over the counter cures and fold remedies are effective boil treatments. As with any medical problem there are some rules to follow to stay safe and healthy.

When to Seek Medical Treatment

If it does not drain within two weeks

If it l is on your face, neck or head – basically if the boil is above your shoulders, see a doctor.

If red streaks appear around the infection site

If it is very painful

If you develop a fever – if the fever is accompanied by chills, seek emergency medical attention.

If the skin around the head of a boil turns red

If you suffer from diabetes, heart ailments including a murmur, suppressed immune system from medications or disease

Treat it with Heat

Wet a small, clean towel with the hottest water you can stand without burning yourself.

Wring out the excess water.

Lay the towel over it for 20 minutes to help bring it to a head where it will burst and the pus will drain.

Repeat at least four times per day.

Treating it with Thyme and Chamomile Tea

Bring 1 cup of water to a boil.

Add 1 tablespoon of fresh time.

Allow the water to cool until you can touch it without getting burned, but still hot.

Submerge a wash rag into the thyme tea, wring out the excess and lay it over it until the wash rag cools.

The heat helps to bring it to a head and thyme has antibiotic properties that speed the healing time.

Bring a second cup of water to a boil.

Add 1 tablespoon loose chamomile tea or three to four tea bags to the water.

Allow the tea to steep until the water can be touched without burns.

Submerge a new, clean wash rag into the tea and lay it over the infection until the wash rag is cool.

The heat draws the pus up to the surface of the skin while the chamomile tea helps to reduce swelling.

Black Tea

 1 cup of water of boiling water.

Place a black tea – tea bag into the water to absorb the heat.

Squeeze out excess water and lay the tea bag on top of it. While the tea bag cools, submerge it into the boiling water again. Continue to rewet and reheat the tea bag for at least 20 minutes.

Black tea will dry out the boil and tea also contains antibacterial agents which will help promote healing.

Folk Remedy

Drop a green cabbage leaf into boiling water.

Remove the cabbage leaf after 1 minute.

Lightly wrap the leaf with sterile gauze.

Place the cabbage leaf over the boil and wrap it in place with rolled gauze.

Leaf the cabbage leaf in place for 60 minutes.

Repeat twice per day using a new leaf and new gauze each time.

Tea Tree Oil on a Boil

Wet a clean cotton ball with tea tree essential oil.

Dab the tea tree onto the boil and surrounding skin four to six times per day.

Tea tree oil has natural antiseptic properties and will dry out the boil.

Baking Soda for a Furnacle

Pour 1 tablespoon baking soda into a small bowl.

Slowly add water while stirring continuously until you form a paste.

Spread a thick layer of the paste over a boil.

Lay a hot, wet wash rag over the paste and let it sit for 15 to 20 minutes.

Repeat three to four times per day.

Baking soda helps to relieve pain and dries the boil.


Cook ½ cup regular, plain oatmeal. Do not use instant oatmeal.

Allow the oatmeal to cool until it is hot, but does not burn you to touch.

Spread a thick layer of oatmeal over the boil.

Cover the oatmeal with sterile gauze and wrap the gauze pad in place with rolled gauze.

Leave in place for an hour or two.

Many times when the boil comes to a head the oatmeal will cause it to busrt.

Milking the Furnicle

Heat a cup of milk until it is hot but not boiling.

Place a piece of stale white bread into the milk.

Lay the milk soaked white bread over the boil until the bread cools to bring it to a head.

Breaking and Draining that Bad-Boy-Boil with Science

Thoroughly wash a glass beer bottle, soda bottle or other small topped bottle with antibacterial soap and water.

Place the bottle into a pot and cover it with very hot water.

Carefully pick up the bottle, making sure the heat will not burn your skin.

Cover the head of the boil with the opening of the bottle.

Lightly press the bottle down so the top of the bottle makes total contact with the skin around the boil’s head.

Hold it in place.

As the bottle cools it forms a vacuum strong enough to break the head and pull the pus out of the boil.

This will only work after the boil has come to a head.

After It Breaks Treatment

Wash the boil and skin around it with antibacterial soap.

Pat the area dry with a paper towel.

Apply a broad spectrum antibiotic cream such as Neosporin to a sterile gauze pad.

Place the gauze on top of the boil and wrap it in place with rolled gauze.


Always wash your hands with antibacterial soap after coming in contact with the boil or the pus.

Wash clothing, towels and wash rags that were used by the infected person with the hottest water possible to kill the staph.

Never squeeze a boil.