How Can I Tell My Child Has A Skin Infection
A skin infection can look a lot like eczema. Both cause swollen, itchy skin that can ooze fluid and form crusts. By looking closely at your childs skin, you can find signs of a skin infection.
Youll want to look for:
Yellowish-orange or honey-colored crusts, often on top of eczema.
Pus-filled blisters, especially on top of eczema.
Sores that look like cold sores or fever blisters.
Reddish, swollen bumps on skin.
Streaks or redness spreading on skin.
Youll also want to check your child for:
Swollen tonsils and other lymph nodes
Infection or eczema?
A skin infection can look a lot like eczema. Looking for some common signs can help you spot a skin infection.
How Common Is Eczema
Eczema affects up to 15 million Americans. Infants are prone to eczema and 10% to 20% will have it. However, nearly half outgrow the condition or have significant improvement as they get older.
Eczema affects males and females equally and is more common in people who have a personal or family history of asthma, environmental allergies and/or food allergies.
What Causes A Fungal Skin Infection Vs Eczema
Fungal Skin Infection Causes
An overgrowth of the fungus Candida is the cause of yeast infections. Candidal infections commonly occur in warm, moist body areas, such as the underarms or where skin folds over itself like breast/chest skin. Usually, the skin effectively blocks yeast, but any skin breakdown or cuts in the skin may allow this organism to penetrate and infect.
Areas typically affected by the fungus in babies include the mouth and diaper areas. Moist diapers can lead to an overgrowth of yeast.
In adults, oral yeast infections become more common with increased age. Adults can also have yeast infections around dentures, in the folds under the breast and lower abdomen, in the nail beds, and beneath other skin folds. Most of these candidal infections are superficial and clear up easily with treatment.
In women, vaginal yeast infections are the second most common reason for vaginal burning, itching, and discharge. Yeasts are found in the vagina of most women and can overgrow if the environment in the vagina changes. Antibiotic and steroid use is the most common reason for yeast overgrowth. However, pregnancy, menstruation, diabetes, and birth control pills can also contribute to developing a yeast infection. Yeast infections are more common after menopause.
Common triggers of atopic dermatitis include the following:
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Managing My Eczema Today
Ive been taking a corticosteroid cream for most of my life, but I wish I had other options.Some of the eczema creams and drugs on the market are too expensive for me. But Ive also made some progress in recent years. After a particularly bad flare a couple of years ago, I found an allergist that I love. Hes by far the most knowledgeable doctor that Ive gone to in a long time.
I also have a boyfriend whos really supportive of me. Hes never had any issues with his skin, so hes had to get used to a lot of my quirks over the past four years. He had to change all his soaps and re-learn how to wash his clothes. Plus, he loves seafood, but he waits until Im out of town to go on a sushi binge. Then hell shower and brush his teeth a few times before I get back.
Right now, my eczema is pretty bad Im in the middle of a flare. But this happened to my older sister when she was 30 years old, too. Now shes 34, and her skin is much better, so Im hoping in the next few years, Ill be able to rein my eczema in, as well.
Ralina Shaw, as told to Maria Masters
The Root Causes Of Eczema Are They Hidden In The Gut
Want to improve your childs eczema by enhancing their gut health?
Learn how to do just that with our
Eczema causes issues for many children, affecting 1 in 5 infants. This itchy rash might not be a serious health concern in itself. But it can range from uncomfortable to unbearable for babies and young children.
There are many topical options for managing eczema, including steroid creams and herb-based creams. But these dont address the underlying causes of eczema. The main causes of eczema are actually found inside the body particularly the gut.
Watch the video below or keep reading to learn more about how gut health can affect eczema.
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What Is The Prognosis For Fungal Skin Infection Vs Eczema
Fungal Skin Infection Prognosis
In most cases, yeast infections will go away completely within one to two weeks when treated appropriately.
Complications of yeast infections include the infection returning, excessive scratching may cause cracking of the skin that could lead to a secondary skin infection, and a yeast infection of the nails may cause the nails to become misshapen. In people with compromised immune systems , widespread candidiasis may occur.
If you have recurring yeast infections, or a yeast infection that does not respond to treatment, it may be an early sign of another disorder such as diabetes or HIV.
Atopic dermatitis usually spontaneously improves in most individuals after puberty. In a few unfortunate individuals, it becomes chronic, resulting in occasional flares often at times of very low humidity . It may also return much later in adulthood and may prove especially difficult to manage.
The role of psychological stress inducing flares of the dermatitis is poorly understood. There is no question that when the condition flares and sleep is inhibited by itching, one’s normal ability to deal with emotional problems is diminished.
Eczema causes skin sores and cracks that are susceptible to infection. These infections are usually very minor, but they do require treatment with antibiotics or they may become very severe. See a health care professional if an infection is suspected.
- Dry, sensitive skin
What Questions Should I Ask My Healthcare Provider About Eczema
- How can you tell that I have eczema?
- If I dont have eczema, what other skin condition might I have?
- Is there a specific brand of moisturizer that you recommend?
- Is there a prescription cream that you can prescribe?
- How often should I see a dermatologist regarding my eczema?
- What soaps, lotions, makeup, etc. should I avoid?
- What medications do you recommend?
- What at-home treatments do you recommend?
A note from Cleveland Clinic
Eczema is very normal, very common, and very, very uncomfortable. It can affect your quality of life. At its worse it can keep you from sleeping, distract you and make you feel self-conscious in public. See your dermatologist or other healthcare provider as soon as you start to see signs of it. Explore at-home remedies and prescribed treatments.
Youre not alone! 15% to 20% of people experience eczema or another type of dermatitis at some point in their lives.
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Study Reveals The Cause Of Eczema
Dr. Herbert B. Allen, a professor at the Drexel University College of Medicine and the chairman of the dermatology department, has reportedly discovered the cause of eczema, an inflammatory and itchy skin disorder. The report, released online Jan. 22 via JAMA Dermatology, states that the staphylococcal bacteria that live on the skin may be the cause of eczema. Such bacteria produce a biofilm that blocks sweat ducts, which activates molecules in the bodys immune system, causing itching and irritation.
About 30 million people in America have eczema, which is a collective term for disorders that result in inflamed, irritated skin. The most common of these disorders is atopic dermatitis, or AD. People with eczema are typically diagnosed when they are infants or young children, and it usually becomes less severe in adulthood.
Allen started his research four years ago because he was interested in finding out the cause of eczema rather than fighting the disease itself.
We knew it was worse when people were sweating. I wondered if it might be similar to miliaria , where the sweat ducts become occluded and cause itching, he said.
Dr. Suresh Joshi, a research assistant professor in the departments of Surgery and Microbiology & Immunology and the director of surgical site infection and bacterial pathogenesis, said they started their research by investigating many cases of eczema and isolated the variables of possible causes.
Healing The Root Causes Of Eczema
When treating eczema, there are other aspects to consider including topical treatments and removing dietary triggers. But although these can reduce symptoms and flares, they arent getting to the root cause. So if your goal is to heal eczema, looking to gut health is essential.
Why do we focus on gut health? It addresses three of the core eczema causes that topical treatment cant help with. Eczema is not just a skin disorder its an inflammatory, immune and gut health issue.
Healing and nourishing the gut can:
Want to improve your childs eczema by enhancing their gut health?
Learn how to do just that with our
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Is Eczema Herpeticum Infectious
Herpes is a very infectious virus: you can easily catch it by touching the skin of someone with herpes. For example, if you kiss someone who has a cold sore, there is a high chance you will get a cold sore too. With eczema herpeticum, if you have damaged skin from eczema and you touch the eczema herpeticum there is a reasonable chance you will develop the infection too. This is particularly so if your eczema is inflamed or the skin is very broken.
If your child is hospitalised with eczema herpeticum you will probably have to wear gloves and an apron when you visit them. Elderly people or anyone who is unwell or frail will be advised not to visit them in hospital.
So if you or your child have eczema herpeticum it would be sensible to avoid contact with:
- Children with atopic eczema.
- People who have problems with their immune systems . This would include people with AIDS, people who have recently had chemotherapy or people who are on steroid medication.
- Newborn babies.
Other Causes Of Infected Eczema
An infection from Staphylococcus, Streptococcus, or other bacteria is just one cause of infected eczema. Others include fungal infections and viral infections.
Eczema itself isnt contagious, and most infected cases usually arent either. However, some of the causes of the infection may be contagious to people who have eczema, such as exposure to herpes simplex.
If you have eczema with frequent broken skin, its important to take care around others who have herpes simplex. The telltale sign of this is usually a cold sore.
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Scientists Home In On Eczema
Researchers trying to figure out how bacteria might cause eczema say theyve found an important new clue: Specific strains of Staphylococcus bacteria seem to cause more severe symptoms.
Kids with eczema tended to have larger populations of Staphylococcus aureus living on their skin, while kids without the itchy condition tended to have more of a related bacteria called Staphylococcus epidermidis, a team reported in the journal Science Translational Medicine.
And the team at the National Institutes of Health narrowed down the bad bacteria using genetic sequencing.
The hope is to figure out if the staph bacteria are causing the eczema or are a side-effect, and whether they worsen the symptoms. Eventually, it might be possible to use the knowledge to develop better treatments.
Atopic dermatitis is a common inflammatory skin disorder in industrialized countries, affecting 10 to 30 percent of children, Julia Segre of the NIHs National Human Genome Research Institute and colleagues wrote.
Patients with atopic dermatitis suffer from chronic, relapsing, intensely itchy, and inflamed skin lesions and have an increased likelihood of developing asthma and/or hay fever.
Bacteria are a longtime suspect, and one treatment for eczema is a bleach bath to kill them off. But its not usually a long-term fix.
But its important to figure out just who the bad actors are, and thats what Segres team did.
How Is Eczema Diagnosed What Tests Are Done
Your healthcare provider will take a close look at your skin. They will look for classic signs of eczema such as a redness and dryness. They will ask about the symptoms youre experiencing.
Usually your healthcare provider will be able to diagnose eczema based on examining your skin. However, when there is doubt, they may perform the following tests:
- An allergy skin test.
- Blood tests to check for causes of the rash that might be unrelated to dermatitis.
- A skin biopsy to distinguish one type of dermatitis from another.
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What Should I Do If My Child Seems To Have A Skin Infection
Flu-like symptoms or a fever : Get immediate medical care.
Signs of infection without fever: If you see signs but your child seems the same as usual, contact your childs dermatologist.
If you are using wet-wrap therapy, occlusion , or soak and smear, stop. These can worsen the infection. Before using one of these treatments again, ask your childs dermatologist when its safe to start.
Risks Of Eczema Infection
Eczema leaves your skin raw, making you more susceptible to bacteria entering your bloodstream. Other conditions that commonly affect those with eczema and eczema infection include:
- Asthma â 20% of adults with eczema also suffer from asthma.
- Allergic rhinitis â Also called hay fever, this condition causes a reaction in your sinuses when youâre exposed to dust particles and pollen.
- Food allergies â Since eczema is an inflammatory skin condition, you may be more prone to digestive inflammation, too. The same foods that cause digestion upset may also make your skin condition worse.
- Other infections â When your skin is prone to one infection, itâs prone to many. You may also contract impetigo, cellulitis, furuncles, or staph. These skin infections appear on top of your eczema.
- Mental health conditions â When you struggle every day with the pain and unsightly appearance of eczema, it can take a toll mentally. If you feel depressed or anxious, talk to your doctor.
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Thursday 25 February 2021
Did you know your skin is covered in trillions of bugs? But dont be alarmed. While you cant see them, most of these bugs, or micro-organisms, are there to help us to stay healthy.
These micro-organisms make up your skin microbiome. When they are balanced and happy your skin usually is, too.
Your skin microbiome works similarly to your gut microbiome, which is also made up of micro-organisms. These micro-organisms mainly contain bacteria that play a key role in digesting food and absorbing nutrients. But therere good bacteria and bad bacteria.
The balance of our gut can be disrupted by several factors, and this can cause inflammation, which can lead to physical or mental conditions.
Just like your gut, when your skin microbiome is out of balance and the bad bacteria takes over, it can become inflamed, leading to the development of common rash conditions like eczema and dermatitis.
Common skin conditions like acne and dandruff can also be a sign that your skin microbiome is unbalanced.
What Is Eczema What Does It Look And Feel Like
Eczema is a condition that causes your skin to become dry, red, itchy and bumpy. Its one of many types of dermatitis. Eczema damages the skin barrier function . This loss of barrier function makes your skin more sensitive and more prone to infection and dryness.
Eczema doesnt harm your body. It doesnt mean that your skin is dirty or infected, and its not contagious. There are treatments that can help manage your symptoms.
In the word dermatitis, derm means skin and itis means inflammation. The word as a whole means inflammation of the skin. Eczema originates from the Greek word ekzein which means to boil over or break out.
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Can I Prevent New Skin Infections
If your child gets frequent skin infections, the following can be helpful:
You can avoid spreading bacteria and other germs by:
A bit of detective work may be necessary to find out whats causing the infections.
Referral And Seeking Specialist Advice
Patients should be referred to hospital if they have any signs or symptoms suggestive of a more serious illness or condition, such as sepsis, or necrotising fasciitis.11
Consider referral or specialist advice for patients with infected eczema if they have spreading infection that is not responding to oral antibiotics, are systemically unwell, are at high risk of complications, or have infections that recur frequently.11
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