Bacterial Skin Infections 101
Bacteria are broadly categorized as the ‘good’ bacteria and the ‘bad’ bacteria. While the good variants promote a healthy immune system, the bad bacteria cause a variety of infections in the human body. Some of the most common skin infections are caused by bacteria. Bacterial and fungal skin infections are some of the most common skin diseases in summer that dermatologists treat.
Here’s an overview of the types of bacterial skin infections:
- Staphylococcus aureus: Caused by the Staphylococcus strain of bacteria, this type of infection includes conditions such as folliculitis, furunculosis (boils) and abscesses, impetigo (school sores) and ecthyma, etc.
- Streptococcus pyogenes: Caused by the Streptococcus strain of bacteria, this type of infection includes conditions such as cellulitis, erysipelas, scarlet fever, infectious gangrene, etc.
The following are the symptoms of some common bacterial skin infections:
- Cellulitis: Cellulitis is characterized by a painful infection that usually appears on the legs. The affected region is red, inflamed and warm to touch.
Impetigo: Impetigo is a condition that usually affects young children, and it causes oozing sores on the skin.
Boils: Boils occur when the bacteria infects hair follicles and causes a red, firm, painful and pus-filled bump on the skin.
Folliculitis: As the term suggests, folliculitis is an infection of the hair follicles that is caused by the bacteria found in poorly maintained public pools or hot tubs.
Erysipelas: Erysipelas is one of the more serious forms of bacterial skin infection. Some of the signs include a severe rash that may be preceded by flu-like symptoms. The common infection sites are the legs and the face.
Some effective measures to prevent and treat bacterial skin infections and other summer skin problems:
Maintaining proper hygiene is the key to preventing all kinds of skin infections.
In case of an injury, ensure that the wound is disinfected properly so as to prevent infection.
Bacterial skin infections are treated with the use of oral or topical antibiotics. The antibiotics prescribed depend on the strain of bacteria causing the infection
Consult your dermatologist to learn more about the best practices to prevent and treat skin infections.
1.Common Bacterial Skin Infections-http://www.aafp.org/afp/2002/0701/p119.html
2. Bacterial skin infections-https://www.dermnetnz.org/topics/bacterial-skin-infections/
3.Overview of Bacterial Skin Infections- http://www.merckmanuals.com/home/skin-disorders/bacterial-skin-infections/overview-of-bacterial-skin-infections