Sources: Papers On Health
The following treatment will be found effective to heal less
severe forms of boils, by soothing the whole fevered system of nerves,
and stimulating the skin in its getting rid of waste material.
Begin, then, by thoroughly soaping the head (see Head, Soaping). Go
to the back next, and soap similarly. The same process may, if desired,
be carried over the whole body to the very tips of the fingers and
toes. In a delicate case, do this in portions so as not to run any risk
of exposing the patient too much.
Lay on the boil, after the soaping, and while the patient is under its
soothing influence, a large piece of thickly folded flannel, or a small
sponge, squeezed out of water as hot as the patient can bear. Continue
this, with frequent re-heating of the application for a
quarter-of-an-hour, then allow the patient to rest.
When you have soaped a patient as we have described, say twice, it is
necessary to wash off the particles that may remain on the skin with
white vinegar or weak acetic acid. Then, if you have overcooled with
the soap and acid, it will be well to rub over with warm oil. By these
simple methods of treatment you will banish all tendency to boils. You
will change great suffering into comparative comfort, not only without
expenditure of strength, but in a way in which you add vigour to the
whole frame. One very great advantage of this treatment is that you do
not need to move the patient in any distressing way. If you have only
tact and gentleness of touch, you can do all that we have described
without causing one moment's distress. The severe form of boil known as
Carbuncle is very dangerous, and in such cases good surgical aid is
necessary, in addition to above treatment (see Diet).