Swollen Glands and Other Lumps Under the Skin
The following home treatment measures may help you treat a painful lump or swollen gland.
- Avoid irritation.
- Do not squeeze, scratch, or pick at the lump. Do not stick a needle in it.
- Leave the lump exposed to the air whenever possible.
- Adjust your clothing to avoid rubbing the lump.
- Prevent infection. Do not squeeze, scratch, drain, or puncture a painful lump. Doing this can irritate or inflame the lump, push any existing infection deeper into the skin, or cause severe bleeding.
- Apply warm, wet washcloths to the painful lump for 20 to 30 minutes, 3 or 4 times a day. If you prefer, you can also use a hot water bottle over a damp towel. The heat and moisture can soothe the lump, increase blood circulation to the area, and speed healing. It can also bring a lump caused by infection to a head (but it may take 5 to 7 days). Be careful not to burn your skin. Do not use water that is warmer than bathwater.
Symptoms to watch for during home treatment
Reference Call your doctor if any of the following occur during home treatment:
- A lump or swollen gland gets worse or does not go away after 2 weeks of home treatment.
- A Reference skin infection Opens New Window develops.
- Symptoms become more severe or frequent.
- New symptoms develop.
|By:||Reference Healthwise Staff||Last Revised: Reference April 14, 2011|
|Medical Review:||Reference William H. Blahd, Jr., MD, FACEP - Emergency Medicine
Reference H. Michael O'Connor, MD - Emergency Medicine