What Is Skin Infections?

Skin is the outer layer of our body that serves to protect muscles, tissues, bones and organs. Skin infections are commonly caused by bacteria viruses, and fungi. Those suffering from skin infections  can experience various symptoms on their skin with or without symptoms on other parts of the body. For example a person whose body has smallpox will be filled with aqueous spots accompanied by headache, muscle pain, or fever.

This article discusses some common skin infections.

Diagnosis of Skin Infection
Most skin infections can be recognized immediately by doctors only from seeing a form of skin disorder alone without further examination by reinforcing the patient's perceived symptoms.
If outside observation alone is not enough, doctors may perform follow-up tests to confirm the diagnosis. One of the most frequently applied tests in cases of skin infections is a biopsy or sampling of inflamed skin cells to be further investigated in the laboratory. In addition to biopsy, a blood test is sometimes necessary to identify the type of virus in cases of smallpox.

Prevention of Skin Infections
Some ways we can do to avoid skin infections, one of which is to avoid exposure to viruses, bacteria, or fungi that cause it. Avoid contact with people with skin infections or do not use items that people also use.
Always keep your body clean, especially the hands, so bacteria, viruses, or fungus can not easily infect our body. If there are any lesions on the skin, try to close them so that the infectious microorganisms can not enter.

In the case of fungal skin infections, avoid always keeping the clothes or shoes that we wear. In addition, it is recommended to immediately change the clothes we wear when it feels damp, for example due to sweat.

Some types of skin infections, especially those caused by viruses, can usually be treated at home without the need for a doctor. Unlike viruses, bacterial skin infections usually have to be treated with antibiotics. If still relatively mild, antibiotics in the form of cream or ointment you can apply directly to the infected skin. However, if the severity of the infection is high enough, the doctor will usually prescribe a drinking antibiotic or if necessary give you an antibiotic injection. Similarly with skin infections by the fungus, your doctor can give you a topical anti-fungal, drinking, or injectable drug.

To help reduce inflammation and itching, you can either compress the infected skin with cold water or take an over-the-counter antihistamine drug in a pharmacy.

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Treatment of Smallpox
Because smallpox is caused by viruses, treatment by doctors is generally not necessary except in patients with certain conditions, such as newborns, pregnant women, and patients with low immune systems. For all three cases, doctors will usually prescribe aciclovir.
Do not scratch smallpox even though itchy because it can leave a scar after heal or dry. If smallpox causes fever symptoms, the consumption of over-the-counter painkillers, such as ibuprofen and paracetamol. Although it is sold freely, it is important to read and adhere to the usage instructions contained on the packaging to avoid undesirable side effects.

Herpes Zoster Treatment
Antiviral drugs such as aciclovir, famciclovir, and valaciclovir may be prescribed to speed healing, reduce severity, and prevent complications. In addition, you can also take painkillers, such as paracetamol, to relieve symptoms of pain.
During the healing period of herpes zoster, you are advised to keep the rash dry and clean. In addition, it is prohibited to close the rash with a bandage because it can slow the healing period.

Treatment of Ulcers, Impetigo, Cellulitis, and Leprosy
Because these five conditions occur due to bacterial infection, the main treatment is to use antibiotics. In addition, painkillers, such as paracetamol, can be used to relieve pain.
For severe cases of ulcers, your doctor may give you a penicillin, clarithromycin, or antibiotic. In addition, treatment with small surgery to remove the pus in the ulcer can be done if needed.

For the case of impetigo, topical antibiotics are usually given if the severity of the disease is still relatively mild. If it is severe enough, then the doctor will usually give antibiotics to drink.

For the case of cellulitis, doctors usually prescribe antibiotics of the penicillin group. But if you are allergic to penicillin, then the doctor can replace it with clarithromycin or erythromycin. If the severity of your cellulitis is severe enough, for example to experience symptoms of nausea, vomiting, and fever, it is likely to require hospitalization. Symptoms of nausea, vomiting, and fever may be a sign that cellulitis infections have spread to the bloodstream.

In cases of leprosy, antibiotics diaminodifenyl sulphon, rifampicin, and clofazimine are usually used as initial therapy, usually for a period of over half a year. To prevent nerve damage or other damage, doctors also usually prescribe anti-inflammatory drugs.

Treatment of Ringworm, Candidiasis, Athlete Foot Disease, Sporotrikokis, and Nail Fungus
Because these five conditions are skin infections caused by fungi, the main treatment is to use antifungal drugs. Anti-fungal drugs are available in tablet form (eg griseofulvin and terbinafine), creams, sprays, or shampoo (eg ketoconazole and selenium sulphide).
It is important to evaluate the advice of the physician or the instructions contained in the drug product packaging regarding the procedures for use and dosage so that the treatment of fungal infections can work safely and more effectively.

Symptoms of skin infection vary depending on the type, but in general, this condition can be marked by the presence of symptoms of rash, itching, and skin injuries. Swelling can occur, for example in cases of cellulitis. Below will explain the variety of symptoms of skin infections in more detail.

Symptoms Smallpox
This disease has the main symptoms of the appearance of spots (rash) is watery as dew drops. Rashes may occur throughout the body or part of the body, for example on the arms and legs, chest and abdomen, behind the ears, face, and even on the scalp. Before these spots appear, people with smallpox will usually have fever, headache, and muscle pain, and loss of appetite.
In general, smallpox spots will be very itchy after 12-14 hours from the beginning of appearance. Within a period of two days, the fluid within the spots will usually begin to dry with the beginning of the change to the cloudy color until it finally becomes crust and peel off by itself from the skin within a period of two weeks.

Symptoms of Herpes Zoster
The main symptoms of herpes zoster disease are pain with the sensation of heat in the affected skin area, followed by the appearance of red itchy rashes and smallpox-like spots. The difference in herpes zoster is that the spots will turn yellow after a few days, then deflate and eventually dry.
The pain felt by herpes zoster sufferers may vary. There is a mild pain only and there is also a pain as if poking. Before these symptoms occur, some people with herpes zoster experience other symptoms, such as headache, fever, and itchiness, heat, and numbness around the infected skin area.

Symptoms of ulcers
The initial symptoms of ulcer pain are usually characterized by swelling and red color on the surface of the infected skin. The swelling that is also felt hot when touched this over time will turn into an enlarged bump. The lump of boils will contain pus and like there is a white dot at the end.
Boils may appear singly or may appear in groups. This collection of ulcers is referred to as karbunkel. Compared to regular ulcers, carbuncles are less common. Carbuncles are mostly experienced by elderly people with low immune systems or have poor health conditions.

Symptoms of Impetigo
Based on the symptoms, impetigo is divided into two types, namely bullous and nonbulosa impetigo. Skin of a person experiencing bullous impetigo will appear small spots filled with painful fluid and make the area of ​​skin around it itchy. After a few days, these spots will break and leave a yellow crust.
While in patients with non-bleed impetigo, early symptoms are usually the appearance of red spots that resemble wounds. These spots do not hurt, but itchy. Over time, these spots turn into a brownish crust. Once dry, the non-bone impetigo crust will usually leave a reddish mark.

Cellulitis Symptoms
Cellulitis usually occurs on one leg. Symptoms include burning, pain, swelling, and redness of the infected skin. In some cases of cellulitis, there are even blisters on the skin.
Signs on the skin is also sometimes preceded or accompanied by other symptoms, such as nausea and the body feels cold to make people shiver.

Leprosy Symptoms
Symptoms of leprosy vary, ranging from skin discoloration in the form of spheres, the skin feels numb, causing the patient does not feel anything when the wound, loss of fingers, face changes, to weak muscles that lead to paralysis. Leprosy is a condition that the development of symptoms runs slowly so it is difficult to know from the beginning bacteria infect the body. In some cases, the bacteria of this disease can incubate for more than 20 years.

Symptoms of Ringworm
A reddish rash with irregular outline is the most common ringworm symptom. In addition to having a scaly and itchy texture, a ringworm rash can spread and infect any skin area, such as the upper body (including the scalp), the groin, the legs, even the fingernails. In severe conditions, ringworm rash can form lumps and blisters.

Symptoms of Candidiasis
Symptoms of candidiasis are distinguished by the location of the infection. If it occurs in the mouth, the patient may feel white spots in the mouth or on the surface of the tongue, difficulty swallowing, and sore throat.
In addition to infecting the mouth, candidiasis can also infect the genital skin. In women, the symptoms experienced are usually vaginal skin that turns into redness, itching or pain (especially during intercourse), and vaginal with abnormal texture. While in men, symptoms can be a red rash that feels itchy or hot on the penis (especially on the tip of the penis).

Candidiasis can also infect the baby's buttocks. This condition is commonly called diaper rash. The most common features of diaper rash are the appearance of red patches on the buttocks or groin. In some cases, the rash may also develop into fluid-filled yellow spots.

Symptoms of Tinea Pedis Disease
This infection usually occurs on the sole of the foot or between the toes. People affected by athlete foot disease usually have skin surfaces that look dry, scaly, cracked, or peel (blister). This disease can also make your feet feel itchy or sick.

Symptoms of Nail Fungus
Symptoms of fungal nail disease occur gradually. At first, the sufferer will experience natural nail color changes (eg being white, yellow, green, or black). After that there will be thickening and nail changes. At this stage, usually the patient will begin to feel uncomfortable or painful, especially if there is pressure on the fingers. If not addressed soon, then fungus nail disease will eventually destroy the nails.

Virus is one cause of skin infections. There are three groups of viruses that can be associated with this condition, including herpes simplex virus, human papillomavirus, and poxvirus. Some examples of viral skin infections are often found, among others:
  • Smallpox: caused by varicella-zoster virus
  • Herpes zoster disease: caused by varicella-zoster virus

The next cause of skin infection is bacteria. The two most common types of bacteria causing this condition are streptococcus and S taphylococcus aureus . Some examples of conditions of skin infections caused by these bacteria are:
  • Boils
  • Impetigo
  • Cellulitis
Leprosy is also caused by a bacterial infection, Mycobacterium leprae.

In addition to viruses and bacteria, skin infections can also be caused by fungi. Some examples are:
  • Ringworm
  • Candidiasis
  • Athlete foot disease
  • Nail fungus disease
The potential of viruses or bacteria to infect the skin is very large when we are in direct contact with the patient or using items that have been exposed. Bacteria can also enter the deeper layers of the skin when there is a skin injury. Especially for fungi, skin infections are usually experienced by people who like to wear damp clothing or by those who live in a humid environment.

In addition to the above factors, a person will be more at risk of skin infections if you have a weak immune system.

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