Boils (abscesses)

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An overview of boils (abscesses) including the symptoms, treatments and treatment options.

Key points

  • A boil (abscess) is a painful, red swelling of the skin with a white or yellow tip at the centre.
  • If your child's boil is very painful or large, or if your child has fever, take them to a health-care provider.
  • Treatment includes warm compresses and sometimes antibiotics.
  • Occasionally the boil will need to be drained to help the infection heal.
Last updated: January 28th 2024