Ingrown hairs seem like the simplest thing, it’s just a bump and a hair underneath your skin. But as one Cosmo editor found out, they can be deadly at times. Marta Topran had no idea how it had happened but before she knew it an ingrown hair had turned into a baseball sized lump that had her rushing to the emergency room.
Marta had noticed a small red bump in her bikini area after she had shaved. She thought it was no big deal so she took a pair of tweezers, scraped off the top layer of skin from the bump and pulled out the coiled hair. She thought that this was the end of her dilemma but it was only just the beginning.
After a few days that small bump grew larger and larger but Marta was so busy with travel plans that she didn’t really bother with it. She had had this happen before, she wasn’t worried. But then the lump grew extremely painful. It kept growing in size while she was on her trip. She could barely sit without pain by the time she went to catch her flight home. Her flight was delayed so off to Google she went to find out what the problem was.
She found out how serious the problem was and booked an appointment with her doctor right away. She found out that she had a staph infection. This can happen when someone who is a natural carrier of the staph bacteria (roughly 30% of people are carriers) has a nick or a cut in their skin somewhere such as a shaving cut or a wound from pulling out an ingrown hair. The bacteria gets into the open wound and spreads from there. If not treated it can spread to the bloodstream and cause sepsis which is deadly.
Marta recommends that you change your razor often to avoid nicks, do not ever pick at an ingrown hair, and make sure to use a moisturizing shaving cream so that you don’t cut yourself. Signs to watch for are redness, swelling, pain, and skin that is hot to the touch. If you experience any of these see a doctor immediately.