How to Recognize and Treat Impetigo: A Complete Guide

a man scratching his arm

If you need antibiotics for impetigo treatment, you can trust Fergus Pharmacy, call us or click here to sign up

Impetigo is a common bacterial skin infection that affects both children and adults. It is highly contagious and spreads easily among people in close contact, such as family members and classmates. In this article, we will discuss everything you need to know about impetigo, including its symptoms, causes, and treatment.

What Is Impetigo?

Impetigo is a bacterial skin infection that causes red sores or blisters on the face, hands, and other parts of the body. The sores can be itchy and painful, and they often burst and develop a yellow-brown crust. 

Symptoms of Impetigo

The symptoms of impetigo typically begin with a small red spot on the skin. The spot quickly turns into a blister, then bursts and develops a yellow-brown crust. The sores can be itchy and painful and may spread to other parts of the body if left untreated.

Impetigo can occur anywhere on the body, but it is most commonly found on the face, hands, and arms. The infection can also occur in the diaper area of infants and young children.

What Causes Impetigo?

Impetigo is caused by two types of bacteria: Staphylococcus aureus and Streptococcus pyogenes. The bacteria enter the body through a cut, scrape or insect bite, infecting the skin. The infection is highly contagious and can spread easily through close contact with an infected person or object, such as a towel or clothing.

People at higher risk of developing impetigo include children, athletes, and people with weakened immune systems. Poor hygiene, crowded living conditions, and warm, humid weather can also increase the risk of infection.

How Is Impetigo Diagnosed?

A doctor can usually diagnose impetigo by examining the skin and taking a sample of the fluid from the sores. The sample is then sent to a lab for testing to determine the type of bacteria causing the infection.

Treatment of Impetigo

The treatment of impetigo typically involves antibiotics, either in a cream or an oral medication. The antibiotics kill the bacteria causing the infection and help to heal the sores.

In addition to antibiotics, keeping the affected area clean and dry is important to prevent the infection from spreading. This may involve washing the area with soap and water and applying a clean bandage to the sores. It is also important to avoid scratching or picking at the sores, which can lead to further infection.

How to Prevent Impetigo

The best way to prevent impetigo is to practice good hygiene. This includes washing your hands regularly with soap and water, especially after touching an infected area or object. Keeping cuts and scrapes clean and covered with a bandage until they have healed is also important.

If you or someone in your household has impetigo, it is important to take steps to prevent the infection from spreading. This may include washing towels, clothing, and bedding in hot water and disinfecting surfaces that may have come into contact with the bacteria.

Get Treatment for Impetigo Today

Impetigo is a common bacterial skin infection that can be easily treated with antibiotics. If you suspect that you or someone in your family has impetigo, it is important to see a doctor for diagnosis and treatment. In addition to antibiotics, it is important to practice good hygiene and take steps to prevent the infection from spreading.