How can I treat and prevent blisters?
Blisters may be the most common of all running injuries, but they are among the easiest problems to treat and prevent with no long-term ill effects.
If you have a small blister that is not too painful, cover it with a bandage and go on with your day. The blister will probably rupture on its own. But if you have a larger blister that is painful, you may need to drain it. If it is very large (more than an inch) and severe, you may want to see your podiatrist, but you can take care of small blisters yourself with these steps:
- Get some cotton balls, a safety pin, rubbing alcohol, and a band-aid.
- Clean the blistered area with rubbing alcohol using individual alcohol wipes or an alcohol-soaked cotton ball.
- Use another wipe or cotton ball to clean the pointy tip of the safety pin.
- Gently poke the pin into the edge of the blister where you feel the most liquid underneath and push on the area gently to coax as much fluid out of the pinhole as possible. Blot the area with a tissue or cotton ball and put a band-aid over it.
I recommend leaving the band-aid on during your next run, and replacing it after you shower. This method works for small, uncomplicated blisters, but if the area is discolored, extremely painful, or large, see your podiatrist. Blisters are caused by friction and that friction can come from an ill-fitting shoe, a bunched up sock, or damp, sweaty feet in shoes that don't wick the moisture well enough on a hot day. If you have a chronic problem with blisters, check the fit of your shoe or sock. Your foot may be sliding too much in your shoe (see the lacing tip in the shoe section).
Running Frequently Asked Questions
What are some key tips to proper running nutrition?
What is a good starting point for beginner runners?
How do I know that my running shoes fit properly?
Do you have tips on a more comfortable running shoe fit?
How does lifting weights help my marathon training?
How often do I need to lift weights during marathon training?
What activities can I do if I am sore or injured?
Can I ride a stationary bike to help with my marathon training?
How can I train for a marathon when I'm recovering from an injury?
Can I train for a marathon on a treadmill?
Will yoga help my marathon training?
Why is core body strength important for marathon runners?
Does trail running help with marathon training?
How can a fitness ball help my marathon training?
What should I pack for the marathon?
Is it hard to travel out of town for a marathon?
Do I need to warm up before the start of the marathon?
What additional clothes should I bring to the marathon?
What if it is cold at the start of the marathon?
What should I do if I don't want to throw away extra clothes at the marathon?
What if I can't sleep the night before the marathon?
What should I eat before the marathon?
What if I get hurt or sick during the marathon?
What do I need to do after the marathon?
What is the single best stretch for marathon runners?
How can I stretch my tight shoulders to help my running?
How can I stretch the muscles in my feet?
How can I stretch tight hamstrings?
What exercise will prevent a groin pull?
How can I stretch my tight shoulders?
Why should I stretch?
How can I stretch my quads without hurting my knees?
How can I stretch my hips to help my running?
What is the IT band and how can I stretch it?
How can I relieve my tired legs and feet?
What is the most important part of marathon training?
What if I can't follow my marathon training plan?
How much do I need to run each week to rrain for a marathon?
What should my marathon time be?
Do I need to run each mile at a certain time to complete a marathon?
Do I need to take a day off and not run while training for a marathon?
Do I need to do speed work when training for a marathon?
What are tempo runs and how can they help my marathon training?
What are the mental aspects of marathon training?
Will running on hills help my marathon training?
How do I know my best pace for running a marathon?
How much water should I drink while running?
Should I eat before I run?
What should I eat during long training runs?
What should I eat while training for a marathon?
What is beta carotene and how can it help runners?
How much protein do I need while training for a marathon?
Should I carbo-load before a marathon?
Do I have to give up my favorite foods while training for a marathon?
What should vegetarians eat while training for marathons?
Are energy bars and gels helpful for marathoners?
Are energy drinks better than water ?
How can I start training for a marathon?
How can I stay motivated during marathon training?
What running surfaces are best ror marathon training?
How do I know what pace to run when training for a marathon?
How can I find other marathoners to run with?
What should I do when I get hurt while training for a marathon?
Can I run another marathon right away after my first one?
Do I need different shoes for short distance running?
How long should my short runs be?
What workouts can I do to train for shorter races?
Will short races help my marathon training?
Do I need to warm-up before a short-distance race?
Can half marathon races help my marathon training?
How can short races help my marathon training?
Can I train for a marathon and 10-K at the same time?
Are expensive running socks worth the money?
What should I wear to run when it's cold?
What type of sports apparel is best for marathon running?
How can I carry water and food during a marathon?
Should I wear sunblock while running?
How do I choose a bra for marathon training?
Should I buy a stopwatch for running?
What types of shorts are best for marathon training?
What types of running pants should I buy?
How should I wash my running clothes?
What kind of shirt should I wear for marathon training?
How can I prevent injuries while training for a marathon?
What can I do about plantar fasciitis?
Should I take painkillers when I have a running injury?
What could be causing my hip and back pain?
Can I run if I'm only a bit sick or injured?
How can I treat and prevent blisters?
Is sports massage helpful for marathoners?
What is RICE and does it work to treat injuries?
What is the best way to apply ice to an injured area?
What is a neuroma and how can I treat it?
How can I relieve minor muscle aches associated with marathon training?
How should I choose my running shoes?
How can I keep my heels from slipping in my running shoes?
What size running shoes should I buy?
How can orthotics help my running?
Are men's and women's running shoes different?
Should I wear the same running shoes every day?
How do I know what type of foot I have, and what type of shoe I need?
What's the best way to dry my running shoes when they get wet?
How far ahead of the marathon should I buy new shoes?
What can I do with used running shoes?