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Sulfur Ointment for Skin Problems

Updated on December 19, 2011
sulfur powder
sulfur powder

Sulfur Ointment for Treating Skin Conditions

Sulfur ointment is an over-the-counter (OTC) drug used in the treatment of four skin disorders. Sulfur ointment (also known as precipitated sulfur 5% to10 %) is sold under several brand names and is generally safe to use, however it may dry the skin.

4 Uses for Sulfur Ointment:

1 - Acne - Sulfur ointment is used as an acne treatment for children and adults This common skin disorder causes pimples to form because hair follicles clog up under the skin. Use this medicine as needed, unless your doctor suggests otherwise. The dosages vary from person to person and depend of the type of treatment needed.

2 - Seborrheic Dermatitis - Seborrheic dermatitis is an inflammatory skin condition that causes flaky scales that form oily areas. This happens most often inside and around the ear, on the scalp, eyelids and eyebrows. It is also known to occur on other parts of the body as well.

Note - Cradle Cap - On an infant seborrheic dermatitis is known as cradle cap.

Treatment using sulfur ointment starts with washing affected areas with soap and water, drying thoroughly, then applying the ointment to cover the affected area. Rub in gently.

3 - Scabies - Scabies is caused by a microscopic mite known as Sarcoptes scabei. Scabies causes an itchy skin condition and is common all over the workd. Scabies is known to spread quickly in crowded conditions. Effective treatment of scabies, starts before applying the sulfur ointment. Wash your entire body with soap and water and dry, then apply. After leaving the ointment on for 24 hours, it is important to wash your entire body again before reapplying ointment.

4 - Lice - Your healthcare provider may prescribe sulfur ointment to treat lice as well as other skin conditions. Additionally, some sulfur preparations are only available with a doctor's prescription. If you want to use sulfur ointment for the treatment of lice, you should check with your doctor first about proper usage.

As with any drug, even OTC drugs, the risks must be weighed against the benefits. If you are planning to use sufur ointment and have allergies to any medication, consult your doctor first. There is no specific information available to show how a sulphur drug will work in children or older people as compared to other age groups. Also no adequate studies have been conducted to determine the risk to an infant during breastfeeding.

Sulfur comes in a variety of forms. As soap, it has been used for ages. It is also available in a lotion form.

For other healthcare suggestions, see the links below:


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    • Veronica Allen profile image

      Veronica Allen 7 years ago from Georgia

      I had totally forgotten about Sulfur Ointment. My mother used this on us as children and I can vouch for it's effectiveness. Thanks for the great reminder. Rated it up!

    • CountryCityWoman profile image

      CountryCityWoman 7 years ago from From New York City to North Carolina

      It does all seems so familiar. Sulfur has always been around. I'm familiar with the soaps which are very common.

      Thanks for the information.

      Rated up!

    • TheListLady profile image

      TheListLady 7 years ago from New York City

      This sounds so familiar. Sounds like what is old is all brand new. Seems our grandmothers and 'old wives' knew what they were talking about. We have to be careful that it is the real thing.

      Thanks a lot for the comments1

    • BkCreative profile image

      BkCreative 7 years ago from Brooklyn, New York City

      Sulfur soap is sold in so many places and has been for ages. I'm sure the old folks knew all about its many advantages. While I don't have any - I can remember the smell from childhood - there was always a salve.

      Interesting hub. Thanks a lot and rated up!

    • akirchner profile image

      Audrey Kirchner 7 years ago from Washington

      Useful and very informative!