Have you ever wondered why you were constantly noticing dots on your skin and feeling sick as a child? That is because you have probably been infected by Impetigo. Impetigo is a bacterial skin infection that can appear anywhere on the body but mostly attacks the exposed areas in the body. This skin condition is common among young children. Hence, it is known as “school sores”. For children, impetigo will appear on the nose, mouth, and sometimes on the arms and legs.
Impetigo starts when bacteria get into broken skin caused by s a cut, a scratch, or an insect bite. Symptoms of impetigo include red and pimple like sores surrounded by red skin. The sores will then fill up with pus. Then they will burst open after a few days and form a thick crust and spreads on the edges of the skin. They are often very itchy but scratching them will only exacerbate impetigo rather than hindering it.
In some extreme cases, impetigo can invade a deeper layer of skin and develops into ecthyma, a deeper form of disease. The gravest form of impetigo is post-streptococcal glomerulonephritis. Post-streptococcal glomerulonephritis is a severe kidney disease that occurs following a strep infection among children. Other skin related problems such as eczema, lice, insect bites, fungal infections and other forms of skin conditions can make a person susceptible to impetigo.
Impetigo is contagious. People suffering from impetigo get this infectious disease through physical contact with someone who already has it, sharing the same clothing, objects, and linens. The nature of childhood includes a lot of physical contact and large group activities. Consequently, children are the primary carriers and victims of impetigo.
Impetigo can be prevented through good hygiene. Doctors can diagnose impetigo by examining the appearance of the rash. They will occasionally need to take a sample of fluid from the blisters. Treatments for impetigo include antibiotic ointments or oral medications.
As the infection is healing, gently wash the infected areas of the skin with a clean gauze and antiseptic soap every day. You should soak any areas of crusted skin in warm soapy water to help remove the layers of crust.
In order to keep the impetigo from spreading to other parts of your body, a doctor or nurse will probably recommend covering infected areas of skin with gauze and tape or a loose plastic bandage. Keeping your and your child’s fingernails short and clean can also help keep impetigo in check.