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What to do with a cyst/pimple/zit

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#1 Wynne

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Posted 13 August 2007 - 03:17 AM

This question comes up so frequently.

Here's what to do when you've messed with a pimple and it looks horribly swollen, red and painful now.
Keep in mind that the treatment may also prevent an incipient cyst from getting worse.
The treatment may also help prevent Post Inflammatory Hyperpigmentation (PIH) or red marks.
 

You can repeat these techniques for as many days as you like. Do not give up too early, try the icing and bandaid/ointment for at least a week before assuming it won't work.


Detailed explanation and rationale:
 

Ice how-to:


Wrap an ice cube in a thin cloth towel or paper towel so the ice doesn't directly touch your skin or just stick it in a plastic baggie. Some recommend freezing a bunch of water-filled little paper Dixie cups in the freezer. The thin paper cups make it convenient to hold and apply ice to the lesions. That's a great idea from Laura, the esthetician that Willow569 goes to.

Hold the ice to the lesion for one minute or so on, five minutes or so off. Repeat as often as necessary throughout the first 24 hours, but not to the point that your skin turns pale or feels uncomfortable. The ice will reduce the swelling and the pain and the redness. The ice may also limit the development of post inflammatory hyper-pigmentation, PIH, or ‘red marks’.

You could also just glide an ice cube gently over your whole face, not holding it in one spot for too long. This technique will help decrease inflammation over the entire surface of your face. This is also a good technique for use after cleansing and prior to applying your active, medicated topical.

Anti-Inflammatory how-to:
Ibuprofen and naproxen sodium are anti-inflammatories. Inflammation is redness, swelling, pain. One or the other medication will help reduce the inflammation of any type of infection and may also help with pain. Use only as directed on the package, pick one or the other, and don’t use for longer than directed. Of course, don't use one if you're allergic to it! Depending on where you live there may be other anti-inflammatories available as well; ask your pharmacist or chemist what you can take as an anti-inflammatory. Over the counter medications for arthritis are generally effective.

If your doctor has ordered an antibiotic due to the inflamed lesion(s), continue to take the antibiotic as ordered. You may still take an anti-inflammatory for pain and swelling. The antibiotic is for the infection (bacteria) and the anti-inflammatory is for the pain, redness, and swelling.

Topical antibiotic cream/ointment and band aid/plaster how-to:
(Polysporin, Neosporin, Bacitracin, etc. I use Polysporin more often. Some may be allergic to Neosporin, sometimes Bacitracin, less rarely to Polysporin)
Apply a dab of antibiotic cream/ointment to a small band aid (this prevents contamination of the tube provided the bandaid is sterile and you've not touched the pad part with your fingers or anything else).

Put the band aid/plaster on the lesion. Leave on overnight. This is the part of the step that helps prevent PIH; the petrolatum jelly in most antibiotic ointments/creams is what provides the soothing relief that irritated, inflamed skin needs. You CAN use plain petrolatum jelly. It is not comedogenic. The bandaid also helps keep you from picking so you can use it during the day if you're going to be at home or not much in public, unless of course your self-esteem is high enough so that you can go in public with bandaids/plasters all over your face.

The antibiotic cream/ointment may help prevent indented scarring.

There you go. Good luck! biggrin.gif


Take responsibility for your health; read the full prescribing information for any medication you take and understand that not all risks or potential side effects will likely ever be fully known.

=Regimen: Cetaphil Sensitive Skin Bar & Avon Anew Advanced Clinical Retexturizing Peel every day & Queen Helene Mint Julep mask weekly=
*Glycolic Acid Product Recommendations *What to do with a cyst/pimple/zit

Wynne 2.9Beta Harder, Better, Faster, Stronger

Please ask questions on the boards, not via PM. That way all benefit. Thanks!


#2 duane

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Posted 31 August 2007 - 12:05 AM

thanks for the tip!

i'm using bp which is supposed kill acne bacteria. so, would it still be helpful to add an antibiotic cream on top of bp?
DKR REGIMEN

morning
dessert essence jojoba oil, purpose gentle cleansing wash, paula's choice 1% BHA gel (to unclog pores), acne.org 2.5% benzoyl peroxide gel, complex 15 moisturizing lotion

throughout the day as needed
alpha hydrox enhanced lotion, generic oil absorbing sheets, 200 mg ibuprofen

night
dessert essence jojoba oil, purpose gentle cleansing wash, paula's choice 1% BHA gel (to unclog pores), acne.org 2.5% benzoyl peroxide gel, cetaphil moisturizing cream mixed with jojoba oil


DIET


whole grains, fresh fish, fresh poultry, fresh vegetables, lots of water, low cholesterol, low salt, no red meat, no trans fats, no hydrogenated oils, no sugar, no processed grains


DAILY DIETARY SUPPLEMENTS

3000 mg whole food multi-vitamins, 1000 mg sustained release pantothenic acid, 1000 mg salmon oil (120 mg EPA, 20 mg DHA), 540 mg saw palmetto, 500 mcg chromium picolinate, 470 mg green tea extract, 400 mg turmeric extract, 300 mcg biotin, 50 mg zinc, 2 mg copper, calcium-magnesium complex

my dkr log

my diet/holistic log

resolving stubborn acne while on dan's regimen

#3 Wynne

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Posted 31 August 2007 - 12:13 AM

QUOTE (duane @ Aug 31 2007, 02:05 AM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
thanks for the tip!

i'm using bp which is supposed kill acne bacteria. so, would it still be helpful to add an antibiotic cream on top of bp?

Yes, particularly if the pimple is open. I've found that the antibiotic cream provides a protective barrier and also seems to help prevent scarring. I always scarred from every single pimple I ever had, even extracted blackheads would leave an enlarged pore behind. Now that I'm moisturizing with vaseline (that component is in some antibiotic ointments), and occasionally spot treated with Polysporin, I have not had one new scar in four months. That is unheard of for me. smile.gif

#4 duane

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Posted 31 August 2007 - 12:31 AM

QUOTE(Wynne @ Aug 31 2007, 02:13 AM) View Post
QUOTE(duane @ Aug 31 2007, 02:05 AM) View Post
thanks for the tip!

i'm using bp which is supposed kill acne bacteria. so, would it still be helpful to add an antibiotic cream on top of bp?

Yes, particularly if the pimple is open. I've found that the antibiotic cream provides a protective barrier and also seems to help prevent scarring. I always scarred from every single pimple I ever had, even extracted blackheads would leave an enlarged pore behind. Now that I'm moisturizing with vaseline (that component is in some antibiotic ointments), and occasionally spot treated with Polysporin, I have not had one new scar in four months. That is unheard of for me. smile.gif

it makes sense that an antibiotic cream would be helpful on open pimples. but i'm wondering whether it would make much difference on closed pimples when used in conjuction with bp...since bp is an acne antibacterial agent.
DKR REGIMEN

morning
dessert essence jojoba oil, purpose gentle cleansing wash, paula's choice 1% BHA gel (to unclog pores), acne.org 2.5% benzoyl peroxide gel, complex 15 moisturizing lotion

throughout the day as needed
alpha hydrox enhanced lotion, generic oil absorbing sheets, 200 mg ibuprofen

night
dessert essence jojoba oil, purpose gentle cleansing wash, paula's choice 1% BHA gel (to unclog pores), acne.org 2.5% benzoyl peroxide gel, cetaphil moisturizing cream mixed with jojoba oil


DIET


whole grains, fresh fish, fresh poultry, fresh vegetables, lots of water, low cholesterol, low salt, no red meat, no trans fats, no hydrogenated oils, no sugar, no processed grains


DAILY DIETARY SUPPLEMENTS

3000 mg whole food multi-vitamins, 1000 mg sustained release pantothenic acid, 1000 mg salmon oil (120 mg EPA, 20 mg DHA), 540 mg saw palmetto, 500 mcg chromium picolinate, 470 mg green tea extract, 400 mg turmeric extract, 300 mcg biotin, 50 mg zinc, 2 mg copper, calcium-magnesium complex

my dkr log

my diet/holistic log

resolving stubborn acne while on dan's regimen

#5 Wynne

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Posted 31 August 2007 - 12:34 AM

QUOTE (duane @ Aug 31 2007, 02:31 AM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
...it makes sense that an antibiotic cream would be helpful on open pimples. but i'm wondering whether it would make much difference on closed pimples when used in conjuction with bp...since bp is an acne antibacterial agent.

The BP should be sufficient on a closed pimple, but the antibiotic cream may soften the skin some more and let the cyst go away more easily. That's just a guess on my part though! I find that moisturizing my skin helps it a lot. Even though I'm oily...

#6 rosiemarie

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Posted 08 December 2007 - 09:12 AM

QUOTE (Wynne @ Dec 2 2007, 05:23 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
I have had this method completely shrink up a few cysts. The cysts got killed. wink.gif


this has been the best method I have found for cysts...it won't magically disappear, but it will help in the healing, and slowly the cyst will go down. thanks for posting the info.
"Always behave like a duck -- keep calm and unruffled on the surface but paddle like the devil underneath."

#7 Wynne

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Posted 08 December 2007 - 01:21 PM

Hi rosemarie! I'm glad it's been helpful. Your signature is TERRIFIC!!!! Something for everyone to keep in mind and practice.

QUOTE
"Always behave like a duck -- keep calm and unruffled on the surface but paddle like the devil underneath."


#8 richmond

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Posted 12 December 2007 - 06:16 PM

i think im going to cry...

i stuffed up. i have a big cyst on my right since monday and i iced it on tuesday night and put BP on it. then for some reason, on wednesday night i had a rush of thought... i decided to get a needle and try squeeze the cyst.

now my whole right hand side is red... i FUCKCKCK up... AND.. i dun think i even got it all out.. its still a bump there...

sometimes if just wanna roll up and sleep forever... sad.gif

i dont know wat to do...
1995 - 2002: Acne all over face

Jun 2003 - April 2007: Cleared face - water only. [Melbourne]

April 2007 - Now: New City [Sydney]. Itchy skin - red marks. Developed Cysts mainly on the right hand side of the face.

#9 sadman

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Posted 13 December 2007 - 06:57 AM

Hi guys I have some questions:
Why can't we directly put the ice cube to the cyst?
I have a cyst now which is still underneath the skin. I'm going to ice this thing as soon as I can get an appointment to the doctor to inject cortisone on it to finally end it. Do you guys think the cortisone shot is still best? I just hope the needle can get deep inside the skin and reach the cyst underneath.

Thanks

---
<3 the regimen
current status: clear but occassional huge zit. like every 3 months or so.

#10 Wynne

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Posted 20 December 2007 - 08:01 AM

You can put the ice cube directly on the cyst, but that can also lead to skin injury. It's just safer overall to buffer your skin from direct contact with ice.

Cortisone shots get mixed reviews. Some people find that the shots shrink up their cysts. Others develop an indented scar from the injection itself. Some of those who develop an indented scar have the scar fade away over time.

Richmond: Stop squeezing and picking. You'll just spread infection that way. Ice your skin properly, clean gently, and sit on your hands when you have an urge to pick. Try to avoid using hot water when washing as that just increases inflammation. Warm and cool water are much better for the skin. smile.gif

#11 MEDiAHORAN

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Posted 23 December 2007 - 01:23 PM

QUOTE (Wynne @ Dec 20 2007, 03:01 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
You can put the ice cube directly on the cyst, but that can also lead to skin injury. It's just safer overall to buffer your skin from direct contact with ice.

Cortisone shots get mixed reviews. Some people find that the shots shrink up their cysts. Others develop an indented scar from the injection itself. Some of those who develop an indented scar have the scar fade away over time.

Richmond: Stop squeezing and picking. You'll just spread infection that way. Ice your skin properly, clean gently, and sit on your hands when you have an urge to pick. Try to avoid using hot water when washing as that just increases inflammation. Warm and cool water are much better for the skin. smile.gif
I have a cyst right now and I see two white things in it, I wonder if I should stroke the baby brush over the cyst area? Because sometimes it hurts when I stroke with the brush over a cyst even if I do it gently - my question is basically if I should NOT touch it at all?

Because I tried to ice it with a paper towel but sometimes it hurts when you apply a little pressure.

Thanks in advance!

#12 MEDiAHORAN

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Posted 24 December 2007 - 11:28 AM

Anyone who knows? Merry Christmas!

#13 ~ Dee

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Posted 24 December 2007 - 12:21 PM

This is just IMHO... If it's that sensitive to the touch, I'd say leave it alone. What would you stand to gain ATM from exfoliating that specific area, if it's already a cyst?

... for doubt and secrecy are the lure of lures, and no new horror can be more terrible than the daily torture of the commonplace. - H.P. Lovecraft
"You people are a bunch of fickle mushheads!" -Mayor Quimby

#14 MEDiAHORAN

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Posted 24 December 2007 - 02:01 PM

QUOTE (-Dee- @ Dec 24 2007, 07:21 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
This is just IMHO... If it's that sensitive to the touch, I'd say leave it alone. What would you stand to gain ATM from exfoliating that specific area, if it's already a cyst?
Well that makes sense, I guess I thought that that cyst are is going to get clogged if I do not brush over it. But yeah I'll think about it in the future! Thanks!

#15 willow569

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Posted 24 December 2007 - 02:13 PM

QUOTE (MEDiAHORAN @ Dec 24 2007, 12:01 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
QUOTE (-Dee- @ Dec 24 2007, 07:21 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
This is just IMHO... If it's that sensitive to the touch, I'd say leave it alone. What would you stand to gain ATM from exfoliating that specific area, if it's already a cyst?
Well that makes sense, I guess I thought that that cyst are is going to get clogged if I do not brush over it. But yeah I'll think about it in the future! Thanks!


I don't think a brush is going to be able to remove the plug from a cyst - it is probably too deeply embedded in the skin, and the brush will probably just cause injury or more inflamation. I would still keep icing it though. Just don't apply a lot of pressure when you hold the ice on it. Also, if it doesn't go away you might consider seeing if a derm can not only do an injection, but also extract the core of the cyst. That can help keep them from coming back again. You definitely want to find someone who has some experience with cosmetic surgical procedures - they are probably better about not leaving scars afterward.


A.M.

-Face Reality Sensitive Skin Cleansing Gel
-Finacea
-MD Formulations AOX Hydrating Gel and/or MD Formulations AOX Lotion (on drier areas)
-Mix a few drops of Niacinamide Gel with Face Reality's SPF 30 for Acne Prone Skin

P.M.

-Face Reality Silica scrub
-Derm A Gel 2 out of 3 nights, PTR Unwrinkle Peel Pads every 3rd night
-Mix Face Reality Hydrating Emulsion with Metazine Niacinamide Gel
-Face Reality's 2.8% BPO (chin only).


*Spot treat any inflamed lesions with Aczone
*Spot treat clogged pores with 8% mandelic


*Diet: Vitamin C and zinc supplements, avoid dairy, avoid iodine, mimimize sugar and salt, avoid peanuts

I also get facials at Face Reality Acne and Skin Care Clinic every 4-6 wks.

My lengthy log:
http://www.acne.org/...p...1620&st=460

#16 Wynne

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Posted 26 January 2008 - 03:28 AM

Excellent advice from willow569 and Dee. Thank you both! smile.gif (sorry I didn't see this earlier to say thanks!)

#17 Helio

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Posted 26 January 2008 - 05:06 PM

I don't know if this has been suggested yet.

I use hydrocortisone on cysts and find that it helps. People get cortisone shots to shrink cysts, so this helps too right?

#18 doejane

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Posted 27 January 2008 - 12:26 AM

Okay... dumb question.. what is BP?

Secondly... alright I have this cyst.. going on about 4 weeks now. I had a cortizone shot, it went down, almost disappeared, then whamo! it came back... with a vengeance. Tonight, it had a whitehead. Small but visible. Its throbbing and I have sharp little pains coming from it... so I popped. Not a big pop... of course I never got the core. I am way to whimpy for that... hurt enough already. I barely touched a sterilized pin to it, and pus flowed (sorry for grossness). Then a liitle blood, more pus, then blood.
The hard nodule is still there.

I read your recommendations.. I am icing it now, and have taken ibuprofen. I have some polysporin I will put on later.

I am also on day 8 of accutane. My skin is freakishly oily for being on day 8... even more oily than it has ever been. Anyone ever heard of that?

And still, I really want to know what BP is.
thanks

#19 Wynne

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Posted 27 January 2008 - 12:51 AM

QUOTE (Helio @ Jan 26 2008, 06:06 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
I don't know if this has been suggested yet.

I use hydrocortisone on cysts and find that it helps. People get cortisone shots to shrink cysts, so this helps too right?

It's not wise to use hydrocortisone. It can damage the skin and allow overgrowth of fungi, yeast, and bacteria. Hydrocortisone is also systemically absorbed via the cutaneous route...not good. All meds have some cutaneous absorption, but you do not want to mess up your own cortisol levels through using hydrocortisone topically. It is ok every once in a while (once a month on a hideous cyst), but NOT daily use even in tiny dabs. Please do look up Google images for overuse of hydrocortisone. See also steroid induced rosacea on these boards and on Google search.

#20 Wynne

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Posted 27 January 2008 - 12:54 AM

QUOTE (doejane @ Jan 27 2008, 01:26 AM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
Okay... dumb question.. what is BP?

Secondly... alright I have this cyst.. going on about 4 weeks now. I had a cortizone shot, it went down, almost disappeared, then whamo! it came back... with a vengeance. Tonight, it had a whitehead. Small but visible. Its throbbing and I have sharp little pains coming from it... so I popped. Not a big pop... of course I never got the core. I am way to whimpy for that... hurt enough already. I barely touched a sterilized pin to it, and pus flowed (sorry for grossness). Then a liitle blood, more pus, then blood.
The hard nodule is still there.

I read your recommendations.. I am icing it now, and have taken ibuprofen. I have some polysporin I will put on later.

I am also on day 8 of accutane. My skin is freakishly oily for being on day 8... even more oily than it has ever been. Anyone ever heard of that?

And still, I really want to know what BP is.
thanks

BP = Benzoyl Peroxide. smile.gif A topical antibacterial treatment that works great for inflamed acne. It's best not to use BP while on Accutane due to additive drying effects! Your skin could become very very angry with you.

It's pretty common for some people to feel that they are a bit more oily in the first month. I am not sure why that occurs; it might be because the oil glands release the oil as they shrink, or who knows! I do not have a scientific explanation for the impression of increased oiliness in the first few weeks. Not all people experience it, but it is also nothing to really worry about. You'll all too soon likely experience more dryness than you expected.