Common skin infections

Common skin infections

Everybody dream of a healthy, supple skin, but with pollution, dust and infection that cause germs around us, it becomes very hard to maintain perfect skin health. Quite often we end up falling prey to skin infections or skin disorders, which can be temporary or permanent, and may be painless or painful & sometimes genetic as well, while some skin conditions can be minor, and others can indicate a more serious issue.

Common skin infections can be caused due to a variety of infectious agents and each infection has its own symptoms and reasons. It is said that skin is our first line of defense and protecting the body from infections is one of its most important functions.

There are several kinds of infections including bacterial, fungal and viral.

Let us take a look at some of these infections-


Bacterial Infections:

  1. Boils
  • caused by a germ (staphylococcal bacteria) entering body through tiny nicks or cuts in the skin or can travel down the hair to the follicle.
  • skin turns red in the area of the infection, and a tender lump develops as pus.
  • occurs on face, neck, armpits, shoulders, and buttocks.


  1. Carbuncles
  • caused by Staphylococcus aureusbacteria ,entering the skin through a hair follicle, small scrape, or puncture, although sometimes there is no obvious point of entry.
  • are red, swollen, large, round bumps and painful cluster of boils filled with pus that are connected to each other under the skin.
  • occurs on buttocks, thighs, groin, and armpits.


  1. Cellulitis
  • caused by bacteria or fungi entering through a crack or cut in the skin
  • main characteristics are warmth, redness, swelling and tenderness
  • fever, chills, and red streaking from the rash might be a sign of serious infection requiring medical attention


Fungal Infections:

Many skin infections are caused due to fungal growth on any part of the skin. Skin infections caused due to fungi include yeast infections, ringworm, athlete’s foot etc. The major symptoms include fever and chills and a rash with painful, red, tender skin.

As for all diseases prevention is better than cure for skin infections as well. It is important to observe precautions so that you can reduce the risk of skin infections, and protect your skin from damage.


Here are some common precautions:

  • Personal hygiene should be maintained. Observing good skin, particularly of hand washing is one of the most effective mechanisms of reducing the risk of skin infections.
  • Any cut or wounds should not be open, they should be kept clean and bandaged regularly until they are completely healed because unhealed wounds can get infected and result in pus formation.
  • Nails should be kept trimmed and clean as fungus can enter the skin through cracked nails and cause it to turn yellow.
  • Keep the sun off: It is important to use a sunscreen lotion/cream when you are about to expose your skin 15mins before to sunlight. Due to direct exposure to sunlight, the skin can develop swelling and sunburn blisters, which can cause your skin to peel off and start itching.
  • Avoid puncture your boils or pimples, do not touch or press them yourself. By doing so it can increase the risk of getting red or brown spots on the skin and of spreading them further. Always report to a doctor and take prescribed medication.


Viral infections:

Viral infection is caused by the presence of a virus in the body. Depending on the virus and the person’s state of health, various viruses can infect almost any type of body tissue, from the brain to the skin.

  1. Molluscum Contagiosum

It is a viral skin infection that causes either single or multiple raised, pearl-like bumps (papules) on the skin.

  1. Shingles

Shingles (herpes zoster) result from a reactivation of the virus that also causes chickenpox.

  1. Chickenpox

Chickenpox (varicella), a viral illness characterized by a very itchy red rash, is one of the most common infectious diseases of childhood.


Contact dermatologist if you think you might have one of these common skin problems.

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