Ingrown hairs are a pain, they make ugly bumps and they hurt or itch. Then, when you are foolish enough to scratch them, they hurt more. It is a never-ending cycle until the ingrown hair is released from its tiny prison under your skin. Treating an ingrown hair requires a little more than eager fingernails or tweezers. In order to avoid infection, there are steps you must take to release the hair and allow the disturbance to heal.
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How to Treat an Itching Ingrown Hair
First thing you must do is not scratch. Instead, when the itch bothers you, place a hot washcloth over the hair and keep it there for five minutes. This lends moisture and heat to the area and will help soften the skin over the hair.
Since the ingrown hair is itching, that means it is irritating the skin over and around it, so it needs to be released. To help draw the hair out you can apply Ichthammol ointment, also known as “black salve,” directly to the affected areas. You can purchase this cream in almost any pharmacy, although you may have to ask for it. This ointment draws out infection, softens the skin covering the hair and will also help with the itching and pain.
Cover the ointment with a hot washcloth and let it sit until the cloth cools. This will give the ointment time to work, and the heat from the cloth will help it penetrate down to that little hair all curled up under the skin.
Wipe off the ointment and hopefully you will be able to see the hair clearly. Do not dig at it with your fingernails.
Use a sterilized needle and tweezers to coax the hair out from under the skin and pluck it. Clean the area with peroxide and voila–no more itching, irritation or ugly bump.