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Forgotten Cures: Boils and Cysts

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  • I recall when I was a child around 8 years old, I had what was called in those days a boil, guess it would be called a cyst now. Anyway, this boil was quite large and on my left hip. It got so large and so impacted I had to lay in bed face down, seemed all the know cures just wouldn't bring this boil to a head, so my Aunt was called in, she quietly said, go to the upper pasture and cut me some large prickly pear cactus and if at all possible, get the one that is blooming. This was done, she took the bloom of that cactus and smashed it into a pulp, she took the thines off the prickly pear, slit the leaf like cactus open, exposing the inside. she then took the pulp of the bloom and smeared this on either side of that cactus section and placed this on the boil, she took cheesecloth and wrapped it around my body to keep the cactus in place. She changed this one more time and on the third day the boil had come to a head and soon drained. Wasn't long before I could walk again. I still have a large indention on my hip where that boil was, but no scar and no other effects from that. I don't know that that the prickly pear cactus was what cured me; I don't even know if there is any medicinal value in these cacti; maybe it was not the time for me to die, and God stepped in. However, I think it helped, for I can still remember how cool and soothing it felt almost immediately after it was placed there. Willa Dean "Dee" Sides

  • Cloverine in the tin can. Winnie Brower

  • As children we listened to our father tell about his WWI experiences -- one story concerned a soldier in his outfit who developed a very large and painful boil on the back of his neck. After reaching the point where it was considered "ripe", the treatment consisted of filling an empty wine bottle with boiling water to heat it up, emptying it and immediately pressing the open neck against the boil. We loved the gross description of how the contents of the boil erupted with an audible smack against the bottom of the bottle! Dorothy * Burdock Root: I had lots of boils when I was young. When I was about 12 years old, my grandmother told me to dig some burdock root, and boil it for a tea and drink a cup full. I went down by the pig pen where lots of it was growing, dug it up, and tried to drink the tea, but I could drink only half a cup, and decided it was worse than the boils. In a few weeks I noticed I didn't have any more boils, and haven't had any since. After that I haven't been so skeptical about herbal cures. Leon Plemons

  • My grandmother gave us sulfur and molasses for spring time purification of the blood to help combat boils, etc. Joanne H. Boswell

  • My French-Canadian grandmother had more than her share of memorable cures but that which I remember best was the application of a tiny bit of tomato avec skin on a boil or pimple that would not come to a head, held on by tape, or later a Band-Aid. Generally within 24 hours said pimple was "ready for popping." Howard E.Congdon

  • The thin skin of an egg to remove splinters, to bring a boil to a head, etc. Roy D. Hurley

  • Bacon poultice, was used for splinters and Boils, you took a piece of salt pork and a clean rag placed a piece of Fat salt pork over your Splinter or Boil and most of the time it was gone or come to a head by morning ...I remember my Granny doing this to me and it worked ... Verna

  • Two methods I recall for bring Boils to a head were the application of bacon rind or slab salt cured bacon and (no longer available) a black natural icthiol ointment. I have no idea what the source of that ointment was, but "icthi" sounds fishy. Charles Diltz

  • A kind reader sent additional information for this one. He/she writes: I still use this stuff

New name Ichthammol Ointment 20% Mfg. Goldline Labs Miami FL Removes splinters, good on bug bites, Tick bites I put on Tincture of Iodine and than Ichthammol Ointment on a Band-Aid for a few days. Haven't had lyme disease sense I started doing this. Had it two times before, But, Maybe I just have immunity or been lucky. Talpaulfl I've been told the 'Ichthammol Ointment' is actually made from fossilised fish bones.. my mother (Hungarian)always had it on hand for any infection type wound as it has a drawing poultice type effect...reason it was always used on splinters etc to draw them out...I still use it and always have a small jar on hand... so it seems this remedy is known world wide... Kathleen Hollan
  • I have cysts come up on me all the time. The Dr. told me that I don't have what it takes in my body to fight them off. As they begin to come to a head, and are really painful, I boil a tea bag. When it gets just cool enough to squeeze some of the liquid out, I place it over the cysts and put a heating pad on top of the tea bag. In just about an hour or so at the most, the cysts pops, and what a relief. It works for me everytime. Good luck with yours. Debi Evans

  • My 1st husband's Father used to take a coke bottle blow cigg. smoke into it, cover quickly with finger, then but it up to boil/cyst & hold it there for a few minutes, and all of a sudden the core would burst out and hit the bottom of coke bottle. When my husband got them, he'd blow smoke in bottle, have me cover it quickly, and apply to area, and it worked every time. Nyla

  • For boils use a regular can of deodorant spray on the infected area and leave alone if its not to a head to bust it will draw it you may have to do this 2 or 3 time at the most it will bust and you wont feel it works great. Rose L.

  • For boils, slice a piece of potato, leaving the skin on and apply the sliced part on boil, cover with a band aid. Do this at bed time. The next morning it will have popped or be ready to pop. The moisture in the potato is what draws it to a head. Works evey time. Jim Lane * My grandmother would heat milk up, soak bread in the hot milk and lay it on the boil, wrap a cloth around and let it set a while, sometimes overnight. It was like a drawing salve and seem t o do the trick. Boots * As a child, I got lots of boils around my vagina. My mother (a coal miner's daughter, like Loretta Lynn! ) stopped buying commercial bubble baths like Mr. Bubble (she claimed they caused infections or made them worse) but instead poured a little dishwashing (yes, dishwashing!) soap under t he tap to make bubbles in my bath. This lessened the number of boils I did get. However, when I did get boils, she would make me sit on the toilet seat and spr ead my legs, then she would pour boiling water on a washcloth, cool it to the point where I could bear the heat, then place it on my boil. She NEVER "popped" a boil by squeezing it, as that would be way too painful!!! Afte r a few applications, the wet heat would cause the yellow (infected) part of the boil to rise to a point and final ly drain, to my great relief. I still don't use any soap but the anti-bacterial kind around my vagina, but I use this metho d when I (very rarely --- say, once every two or three years) get a boil there. Rhonda * The American Journal of Medicine states that these are common in "young, healthy adults." The best solution (I have found out after having nearly 20 in 2 years), is to gring peach tree le aves to a pulp and place them on a slightly damp, warm gauze. leave it on all night, and the boil will come to a h ead in the next day or so. Also, you can heat a wet rag and place about a teaspoon of either baking soda or cornstar ch and let it set. Casey

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Chris on Oct. 31 2009 edit · delete
Unfortunately, I too get these terrible things. They usually come under my arm, between my thighs, and sometimes under my breast. I had one so painful I couldn't sit down. I finally went to my doctor and he put me on antibiotics. He gave me a shot to get it started in my system. I was told to take a white cotton face cloth and wet it with as hot of water that I could bare then twist it out and place that hot towel on the boil. Repeat this as often as possible until it rupture. The hot towel really soothed the pain and it soon burst. WHAT A RELIEF! Because if it hadn't burst in a day or two, my doctor was going to have to surgically burst it. Isn't it something in the Bible about boils?
Forgotten Cures: Boils and Cysts