Boils are formed on the skin as a result of infection caused by the staph bacteria which enter the skin through a severe rash, minor cut etc. Any wound on the skin helps the bacteria from the outside environment to sneak inside. They accumulate in the hair follicle and cause an infection there. Besides the external reasons, boils can be formed as a result of various reasons such as a weak immune system, deficiency of vitamins and minerals, unhygienic surroundings, sharing of towels, bed sheet etc with an infected person, over active sebaceous glands etc.
Although the boils formed by these external and internal reasons can appear on any part of the body, yet they appear to be more concentrated in areas which are hairy and have friction. Some of them are mild which get cured naturally. There may be complication in certain boils if they are squeezed, pressed etc to burst them open. Such boils can spread to other area. Some of the boils disappear after they get drained and dried, but some reappear.
Boils differ in their size, nature, severity etc. On the basis of their reason of origin, they have been divided into different categories. They include furuncles, carbuncles, cystic acne, pilonidal cysts, eye boil or sty, hidradenitis suppurativa and folliculitis.
Hence, the boils cause is also different for different types of boils. Boils cause can be classified into the following categories:
Folliculitis which a localized infection of the hair follicle and resembles tiny, yellow pustules. These are caused by:
- Continuous friction
- Exposure to water
- Occlusive make up and clothes
Furuncles are more severe than folliculitis because they extend till the sebaceous glands. At the onset, they look like small and red nodules. Gradually they become painful and filled with pus. The factors that lead to the development of furuncles are as follows:
- Blood problems
- Taking steroid pills.
Carbuncles are a cluster of furuncles which are more deep seated and reach up to the subcutaneous tissues. They tend to appear in regions which have a thick skin such as the nape of the neck. Its main cause is:
- Bacterial infections caused by staphylococcus aurous.
Eye styes are also called hordeolum. It is formed in the follicle of an eye lash or the oil gland of the eyelid. The main causes why styes develop are as follows:
- Clogged eyelid glands due to chronic blepharitis.
- Too much eye make up and sharing of make up products.
Pilonidal cysts develop on the cleft of the hips. They are the result of prolonged sitting. Their causes include:
- An ingrown hair results in a boil. An ingrown hair grows back into the skin and causes inflammation.
- Boils on the buttocks may get formed due to some foreign object like and infected piece of wood or splinter which manages to enter the skin.
- The sweat glands may get blocked by dirt.
- A minor cut or scrape on the hip skin may lead to a boil infection.
Under arms boils are caused by :
- Excessive sweating.
Scalp boils are caused by:
- Excessive sweating leads to the clogging of the hair follicles with a residue like salt.
- If the hair is combed vigorously, it may lead to development of tiny creases on the scalp’s skin, which may help the bacteria to intrude into the skin and cause boils.
Acne boils cause is:
The sebum is produced in excess during the teenage years due to increase in the hormonal activity. The extra sebum often clogs the pores of the skin and causes acne boils.
Besides these, the main reasons for the recurrence of boils include:
- Skin which is affected by ailments such as eczema.
- Obesity imbalances the metabolism as results in recurrence of boils.
- Weak immune system makes the body ineffective in combating the menace of boils, resulting in their recurrence.
- Hereditary reasons.