Essential Oils, Herbs & Boils

11:06 AM Posted by jo

A boil is an inflamed and infected lump located under or on the skin. It is most commonly caused by the staphylococcus bacterium. They are red, inflamed, tender and painful and can appear very suddenly and within 24 hours they are filled with pus. The nearest lymph glands often become swollen and tender. The boils are contagious and the pus that drains when the boil open can contaminate the skin and causing more boils. It can even enter the blood. Medicinal assistance may be required if the boils are very large. 

A bacterial infection, stress, poor hygiene, food or airborne allergy, illness, lower resistance, poor nutrition, certain drugs, constipation, a toxic bowel and bloodstream, or thyroid disorders may be the cause. 

Therapeutic strategy
According to Battaglia, a hot compress with essential oils is the most effective treatment. The essential oils will "draw out" a boil and speed up the healing. Enhancing the immunity, and purifying and  detoxifying the blood is also important.

Essential ols
 Bergamot, lavender, and tee tree are the most suitable oils according to Battaglia. The area around the boil should also be washed several times a day with 1-3% dilution of lavender or bergamot. Gary Young also recommends nutmeg, peppermint, and naioli.

Detox is needed
If the boils are many and keep recurring, then there's a need to reduce the toxicity in the body. Massage and baths with detoxifying oils such as carrot seed, juniper berry, grapefruit, geranium and rosemary are  traditionally used for detoxifying the body. Check out my post, Cleansing with Essential Oils for additional tips on detoxing.

Goldenseal and echinacea have traditionally been used to cleanse the lymph glands.

Poultices have traditionally been used to bring the boil to a head:
  • Mix half a tablespoon with slippery elm with one tablespoon of linseed oil. Add a tablespoon of charcoal and apply on the boil.
  • Apply pieces of onion wrapped in cloth.

Other suggestions
Don't pop or squeeze a boil since it may cause the infection to go deeper into the body. 

Other things to consider 
  • According to Battaglia, increase the intake of vitamin C to 3000-8000 mg daily. Vitamin C is an immune system stimulant and an anti-inflammatory.
  • Take garlic daily to detoxify the body and to stimulate the immune system.
  • Make sure the diet is high in fruit and vegetables.

Seek medical attention when needed, especially if you suffer from immune deficiency, or other medical conditions. Make sure to call the doctor if the boils are very painful, lasts longer than two weeks or if you develop a fever.

Thanks for reading!

Before you leave:

I recommend that you always perform a skin patch test when you try a new oil on your skin.

Check out my safety page to make sure you are aware of any contrindications before you use essential oils. Some oils are not suitable when suffering from certain conditions. Also, Read this Before You Start Using Essential oils. Some oils should not be applied prior to sun exposure so make sure you check this list before spending time in the sun.

Not sure how to apply the oils? Visit these pages to learn how to apply the oils:
If you're new to essential oils you might want to check out my Getting Started Guide. 


Johanna is an aromatherapist and she is passionate about educating people about health, essential oils, real food, natural remedies, and nutrition so they make healthier choices in their lives. 
Follow Johanna on twitter and facebook for more health tips and information.

Gary Young, ND (2006). Essential Oils, Integrative Medical Guide. Essential Science Publishing
Salvatore Battaglia (1995). The Complete Guide to Aromatherapy. The Perfect Potion Pty Ltd

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