Firstly, let me tell you, blisters are serious business! You should never ignore that hotspot you feel in your boot, take action right away and get a band-aid or some improvised cushioning on the to stop the rubbing. I did a 35 mile day hike once in some new boots (big mistake!), and I ignored the hotspots and blisters; it got to a point at around 25 miles that I knew I was in trouble, but I also knew that if I took off my boots and saw the damage, I probably wouldn’t continue. Anyway the long and short of it is – I made it home, but my feet were a mess and I couldn’t walk for two days afterwards… They were so bad, they took weeks to heal completely.
If you are bugging-out or in a survival situation, not being able to walk for two days could kill you… Blisters caused by friction from boots and packs are entirely preventable; as soon as you feel discomfort, stop and treat.
Now with blisters themselves, everyone has an opinion on how to treat them…. But medically who is right and who is wrong? Is the best blister treatment to leave it alone, or to pop it? Does it depend on what kind of blister it is, for example a friction blister or a blister from a burn? Does it matter where the blister is located on your body? Thankfully the Survival Doctor aka James Hubbard, MD, MPH has written a post on his website on just this topic. Check out Dr James’ thoughts below.