Boils are actually an infection caused by the bacteria Staphylococcus aureus. While this microbe usually resides on the skin’s surface, it can enter and infect the hair follicles when the skin gets scraped or irritated. When this happens, swollen, pus-filled masses appear on your skin.
Painful and bothersome though boils may be, they are not life threatening. In fact, U.S. HealthWorks Medical Group, which operates a North Sacramento urgent care center and occupational health clinic, says that most boils can be safely and effectively treated at home.