Impetigo is a contagious skin infection that gives rise to sores or blisters on the face, neck, and hands. The following article provides information on the causes of this skin condition.
Impetigo, which is classified into bullous and non-bullous impetigo, mainly affects that area of the skin which has incurred injury through cuts or insect bites. It is more common in children. You know that your child may have developed this infection upon noticing red sores which commonly occur around the child’s nose and mouth. These sores tend to rupture rapidly, ooze for a few days and crust over. In severe cases, the sores may be pus-filled, painful and may turn into deep skin ulcers.
This is a bacterial infection that is caused by Staphylococcus aureus and Streptococcus pyogenes. These bacteria reside on the skin and without causing any kind of bothersome problems. However, they stay dormant until one suffers from an injury. The infection occurs when bacteria enter the skin through the cut/wound and multiply.
The staph bacteria produces a toxin that ruptures the protein that binds the skin cells. Thereafter, the infection can spread to surrounding are in no time. This infection is highly contagious. Others might also contract this infection by coming in direct contact with the sores of the affected person. It could get transmitted by touching contaminated surfaces like tables or doorknobs.
The treatment mainly involves administration of antibiotics. Commonly prescribed medicines that need to be applied to the affected area include mupirocin ointment (Bactroban). The patient may also be advised to remove any scabs so as to encourage the ointment to penetrate the sore and treat it effectively. Oral medications might be prescribed, if the condition is of a severe form. In severe cases, the infection has to be treated internally. The complete course of medication has to be finished to ensure effective treatment of the infection and preventing its recurrence.
Along with following the prescribed course of medications, you can help yourself at home by following simple self-care measures. Make a mixture of white vinegar (1 tbsp.) and water (1 pint). Soak the affected area in this solution for about 20 minutes. This is helpful while you are removing the scabs before applying the antibiotic ointment. Ensure that you pat the skin dry before applying the medicated cream. Refrain from scratching and touching the sores.
Disclaimer: The information provided in this article is solely for educating the reader. It is not intended to be a substitute for the advice of a medical expert.