Wednesday, June 15, 2016

A plague of boils

Nobody has boils any more, have you noticed?

I'm sure they used to be a common occurrence when I was young. The words, 'Our Fred's gone to the doctor to have his boil lanced,' were oft heard on the streets of Mumbles. (Whoever Fred was.) (And the only image that would enter my head would be that of a medieval knight with his long jousting lance.) But now you never hear that anyone has a boil.

There was a jeweller's shop in the village run by a quiet old man. I have no idea why I would have had cause to go into the jeweller's as a child but I remember this particular gent as having a huge boil-like thing on the back of his neck. Permanently. It must have been something other than a boil (or he'd have been staright off to have it lanced I'm sure) but it was memorable, poor man.

My pondering on boils started at about 2.00 am last night. It came about when, tossing and turning in bed unable to sleep because of my throbbing little toe - a self-inflicted injury/infection - I needed to take my mind off the fact that I'd just realised that I didn't agree with the notes I'd spent hours writing the previous day. 

I'm not even sure what a boil is. Or why so few people should get them now. Improved cleanliness maybe? Who knows? Or cares if it comes to that. 

And, on reflection in the cold light of day, I realise it's not so much that I disagree with my notes; it's more that I would put a different slant on them.   


nick said...

I get boils now and again on my face and in my mouth, but seldom anywhere else. No idea what causes them. Supposedly a germ, but how come the germs seem to favour one particular area?

Ole Phat Stu said...

A boil, also called a furuncle, is a deep folliculitis, infection of the hair follicle. It is most commonly caused by infection by the bacterium Staphylococcus aureus.

The advent of new and effective antibacterial medicines got rid of most boils.
Nick may need better hygiene, washing his food before preparing it.
Unwashed beards may cause facial boils as well.

SmitoniusAndSonata said...

It can be a sign that you're run down and your immune system's gone to pot .
Antibacterial soaps , rest , sensible meals and less stress can help . And a bad outbreak is one of the few things the doctor will give you an antibiotic for .