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What triggers your HS flares?

Certain types of foods, products, stress, hormones, smoking, genetics, alcohol, and a host of other factors can cause HS flares. A place to exchange ideas, tips, and experiences all related to HS triggers.

What are your triggers? How did you figure them out?

  1. I honestly don't know what my trigger is. I've had this condition since I was a child but wasn't diagnosed until I was 21. I had such a huge knot under my armpit that had no draining, at least not outside of my body but it hurt me so much my Dr. Removed it and did a skin graft. It came out the size of a golf ball with a kind of cone shape on the bottom. He sent it to the mayo clinic and told me what it was. He didn't even know much about it. I moved and couldn't even remember what it was called. I'm now 48 and my youngest daughter now has it. I again have an open tract under my arm and the knot is deep below. It has little draining but feels like I have a ball under my arm and it's painful. I wash under my arms with acne wash and don't spray Deodorant directly on that area. But it's not going away and I need some sort of relief under my arm. It's exhausting trying to sleep because I have to have material or something covering it. I really hate having this and am seeking help through a psychiatrist because it and other things have played a HUGE part of my relationships or lack there of. I've never been married and shy away from intimacy because I didn't want to explain them nor did I want them to catch it. I struggled living in Florida not wanting to go to the beach with all my friends because of my need to hide them. This condition ruined my childhood and most of my adult life. 😪

    1. Ty, I really am so happy I found this group. It's nice to know I'm not alone but sad this is what brought us all together. I know it can't be transmitted but not knowing what I even had and them draining I just would NEVER do that to anybody just for my own selfish needs, had it been contagious. Shoot I thought maybe it was an sad for such a long time. I see my psychiatrist in the morning and I can say a huge weight has lifted that I'm going to seek help but the anxiety is awful because I've been an introvert forever. Once I get this first visit under my belt then I think things might get better. My girls are seeking help for it as well. I do not want them to ever lock themselves away like I did out of fear of having it. Ty for welcoming me. 😊

    2. Hi Tonya! This is definitely the club that none of us want to belong to, that's for sure. I'm so glad you are making these connections. Take your time, we will be here. Sending many hugs to you and your girls! ~Chelsea (Team Member)

  2. For me and I think for everyone else...it's eggs and since chicken makes eggs, that goes the two of them out the window. And anything made with eggs for example cakes, mayonnaise,some normal looking bread,even some pasta, Cornetto, shawarma you get the idea. If you could just let go of eggs and it products for just one month I promise you that you're see your HS receed. I think it's the antibiotics they give the chicken...I don't know. But I'm certain it's chicken and egg products. I'm a guy but a woman going through HS is unthinkable. Stop chicken and egg for month just try it.

    1. Hello! I'm so glad to hear that adjusting your diet in this way worked for you. It's important to note that different people respond in different ways to food, so it's best if others discuss options with their doctors and/or specialists before making changes. Your theory on antibiotics is thought-provoking. Thank you for sharing, and wishing you good health! ~Chelsea (Team Member)

  3. My triggers vary & can sometimes be very random. Stress I found is my biggest trigger. I had the contraceptive Implanon in for 4 years & didn’t have a menstrual period in that time but now that I have it out I find when my period is due I flare like crazy! Also if I push my body too hard I flare. Sometimes I flare for no reason ag all!!

    1. During the years that my HS was at its worst, I would have to say that my Top 3 triggers were: Smoking, large amounts of dairy consumption, and alcohol.


      Years later and speaking from my today’s point of view, I’ve seen many improvements with my HS ever since I quit smoking, and cut back significantly on my dairy intake.


      Lastly, I still have a drink every now and again but recently I haven’t had a drink in over 3 months. So I’m seriously considering giving up alcohol completely because I just feel so much better when I do not drink.

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