Folliculitis is an infection at the site of hair follicles. Folliculitis can be found on any part of the body that has hair. It is caused by bacteria or yeast. Mild folliculitis heals on its own.
Warm compresses made with white vinegar or Burow’s solution is another treatment for folliculitis.
At times, topical antibiotics with mupirocin or clindamycin are applied two to three times a day. Large areas of folliculitis may require antibiotics such as dicloxacillin or cephalexin, taken orally.
If you have scalp folliculitis, a medicated shampoo is good enough.
Natural supplements for folliculitis include:
Garlic (Allium sativum) is believed to have antibacterial properties. Take three garlic cloves or three garlic oil capsules a day when symptoms appear.
Cleavers (Galium aparine) is believed to support the lymphatic system. It may be taken internally to help heal staph abscesses and reduce swelling of the lymph nodes.
Goldenseal (Hydrastis canadensis) is believed to fight infection and reduce inflammation. It may be taken internally when symptoms of infection first appear. Making a paste of water and powdered goldenseal root and applying it to the affected area can treat skin infections.
Echinacea. Taken internally, this herb is believed to have antibiotic properties.
Essential oils. Thyme (Thymus vulgaris), lavender (Lavandula officinalis), or bergamot (Citrus bergamot) oils are good for folliculitis. A few drops of these oils are added to water and a compress soaked in the water is then applied to the affected area. Tea tree oil (Melaleuca or ylang ylang) is another infection-fighting oil. It can be applied directly to the boil or other skin infection.
Fatty acids. Supplement your diet with GLA (gamma-linolenic acid) and omega-3 fatty acids. GLA is an omega-6 fatty acid hard to come by in our diets. It promotes healthy growth of skin, hair, and nails. The best sources are evening primrose oil, black currant oil, and borage oil, taken in capsules as dietary supplements. Increase your intake of omega-3 fatty acids by eating more wild Alaskan salmon, sardines, fortified eggs, freshly ground flax seeds, or walnuts. You can also take a fish oil supplement.
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