Staph infections do not always cause problems and, as a matter of fact, about 25-30% of the U.S. population carry staph on their bodies at any time. However, sometimes staph will cause an infection. A staph induced infection includes pimples, rashes, pus-filled boils and other skin problems. These infections tend to be warm, painful, red and swollen. If you develop a staph infection, keep the area clean and dry. See your doctor, especially if the infection is large and painful and does not seem to be healing by itself. Lab tests will assist your doctor in determining the most effective antibiotic with the infection. If the doctor prescribes medication, be sure to complete the entire prescription.
What can you do to avoid this type of infection? Regular handwashing is the best way to prevent getting and spreading staph and the resulting infection. Keep cuts and scrapes clean and covered. Avoid contact with other people’s wounds. Most importantly, avoid sharing personal items such as towels, washcloths, toothbrushes and razors. Athletes and others who find themselves in close quarters such as gyms, fitness centers and locker rooms seem to be more prone to staph infections including MRSA. Therefore, take particular care in those environments.
If you develop a staph infection of any type and medication is prescribed, continue using the medication as directed. If the infection has not improved within a few days after using the medication, contact your doctor again.