How Is A Skin Infection Treated
Treatment depends on the cause of the infection and the severity. Some types of viral skin infections may improve on their own within days or weeks.
Bacterial infections are often treated with topical antibiotics applied directly to the skin or with oral antibiotics. If the strain of bacteria is resistant to treatment, treating the infection may require intravenous antibiotics administered in the hospital.
You can use over-the-counter antifungal sprays and creams to treat a fungal skin infection. If your condition doesnt improve, ask your doctor about prescription oral or topical creams. In addition, you can apply medicated creams to your skin to treat parasitic skin infections. Your doctor may also recommend medications to reduce discomfort like anti-inflammatory drugs.
Best Over The Counter Antibiotic Cream
- Allergies, Antibiotics, Infection
- Reviewed: Dr Nalisha Sornil
We will review over the counter antibiotic creams in the UK. Some over the counter creams, gels, and ointments available in the UK have antibiotic properties however, most of them are not genuinely classified as antibiotics due to their limitations in eliminating infections. The main focus of this post is to review the use and the effectiveness of antibiotic creams, supported by any existing evidence. Here are include different formulations, not only creams, as this broadens your choice and discussion.
Which Common Infections Require Antibiotics
Patients often ask doctors for antibiotics, not knowing whether antibiotics actually treat those conditions. And doctors tend to over-prescribe antibiotics for conditions that dont always require them. Below, well talk about some common infections and what you should know about treating them.
Colds and flu
Colds and the flu are caused by viruses, so antibiotics wont help. Instead, youll want to focus on managing your symptoms. If you have the flu, your doctor may recommend an antiviral medication like .
If your cold or flu lasts for 2 weeks or more, you may be more likely to develop a bacterial sinus infection or pneumonia. In these cases, its important to visit the doctor to talk about your symptoms. If they prescribe antibiotics, its because youve developed a bacterial infection on top of your cold or flu.
Sinus infections occur when fluid builds up in the air-filled pockets in your face , allowing germs to grow. Symptoms include pain or pressure in your face, a runny or stuffy nose, headache, and mucus dripping down the back of your throat.
Urinary tract infections
Common antibiotics doctors prescribe for UTIs are , , and .
Sore throat, strep throat, and tonsillitis
Inflammation of your throat or tonsils can cause soreness and pain, and you may or may not need antibiotics to treat it. If your sore throat is caused by a virus , you wont need antibiotics. But when its due to bacteria, as in strep throat and bacterial tonsillitis, you will.
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Risk Of Contact Dermatitis
Using OTC topical antibiotic ointments can result in a type of eczema called allergic contact dermatitis, sometimes called a contact allergy. Allergic contact dermatitis results from an irritant or allergen that touches the skin. Symptoms like redness and a rash develop one to two days after skin contact. Other symptoms include inflammation, itching, and possibly burning or blistering of the affected areas.
Aside from OTC topical antibiotic ointments, a range of substances may cause contact dermatitis. Some of these include:
A research study on 100 people found that among different topical medications, topical antibiotic ointments like bacitracin and neomycin were the greatest contributors to contact dermatitis. A different study published in the Journal of the American Academy of Dermatology named bacitracin and neomycin as common allergens in people with contact dermatitis on their hands.
While OTC topical antibiotic ointments may cause contact dermatitis in some people, they might not cause any irritation or allergic reaction in other people. If you think you might be allergic to OTC topical antibiotics, ask your dermatologist or allergist about patch testing. Doctors use patch tests to determine your specific allergies.
Signs And Symptoms Of Bacterial Skin Infection
The main symptoms associated with skin infections include:
- Red, hot skin at the site of infection
- Pus coming out of the injury
- Presence of crust or blisters
- Pain and swelling
Patients should see their GP if the above symptoms are getting worse or if the infection spreads quickly. The most appropriate treatment in this situation would be prescription-only antibiotic cream or oral antibiotic.
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Can You Use Steroid Cream To Treat Skin Infection
Steroid creams are helpful in the management of skin conditions characterised by redness, inflammation, and itchiness, for example, eczema and dermatitis. Two steroid creams can be purchased without a prescription: hydrocortisone and clobetasone, the strongest over the counter steroid cream.
Steroid creams on their own should not be applied to infected skin unless a doctor advises. Some prescription-only antibiotics come as a combination of antibiotics and steroids, which can be used to treat skin infections when prescribed by a doctor.
Before Taking This Medicine
Ask a doctor or pharmacist if it is safe for you to take this medicine if you have other medical conditions, especially:
chronic ear infections or
a ruptured eardrum.
It is not known whether Triple Antibiotic topical will harm an unborn baby. Tell your doctor if you are pregnant or plan to become pregnant while using this medication.
It is not known whether bacitracin, neomycin, and polymyxin B topical passes into breast milk or if it could harm a nursing baby. Tell your doctor if you are breast-feeding a baby.
Triple Antibiotic should not be used on a child younger than 2 years old without medical advice.
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What Ailment Are You Seeking To Treat
Different types of fungus require different types of antifungal cream. The packaging or label may tell you whether a cream is useful for treating a particular ailment. If not, look for the active ingredient. For example, terbinafine is effective for treating ringworm, jock itch, and athletes foot. Miconazole is used to treat the aforementioned ailments and yeast infections, too.
Some antifungal creams include ingredients that help with other symptoms as well, such as inflammation.
Do you have an itch that wont go away? It could be a dry skin condition like eczema, but dont discount the possibility of a fungal infection.
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Neomycin Polymyxin Bacitracin And Hydrocortisone Combination May Cause Side Effects Tell Your Doctor If Any Of These Symptoms Are Severe Or Do Not Go Away:
- stretch marks on the skin
- skin thinning
- small white or red bumps on the skin
- weight gain
- easy bruising
Children who use neomycin, polymyxin, bacitracin, and hydrocortisone combination for longer periods of time may have an increased risk of side effects including slowed growth. Talk to your child’s doctor about the risks of applying this medication to your child’s skin.
Neomycin, polymyxin, bacitracin, and hydrocortisone combination may cause other side effects. Call your doctor if you have any unusual problems while taking this medication.
If you experience a serious side effect, you or your doctor may send a report to the Food and Drug Administration’s MedWatch Adverse Event Reporting program online or by phone .
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Boric Acid Vaginal Suppositories
The boric acid vag suppositories contain natural and organic ingredients that include organic Aloe Vera, apple cider vinegar, and active probiotics as well as pharmaceutical grade boric acid. The product does not contain flow agents, fillers, or artificial ingredients, and it is, therefore, safe for use. The product adheres to rigorous manufacturing practices, and it contains no gluten or GMO components.
Can Uti Symptoms Linger After I Take Antibiotics
Since UTI symptoms usually improve just a few days after starting antibiotics, youll want to talk to your healthcare provider if you notice that UTI symptoms are still hanging around after finishing your antibiotics.
Theres no need to panic, but you and your healthcare provider will want to make sure the antibiotics actually worked against your UTI. To do this, they may take another sample of your urine to see if the bacteria are still there or not. If the infection is cured, youll want to be sure there isnt a different issue thats causing similar symptoms.
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What Are Topical Antibiotics Used For
Topical antibiotics are widely used in the emergency and operating room, as well as at home. They are most commonly used in dermatology for:
Minor cuts, scrapes, and burns
More severe skin lesions and deep burns
Small animal bites or puncture wounds
Methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus infection
Injuries to the eye or eye infections in infants, children, and adults
Pediatric skin conditions, such as impetigo
Dermatologic conditions of the scalp
Prevention of bacterial colonization in at-risk individuals
Skin preparation before surgical procedures
Inflamed Cysts Usually Dont Require Antibiotics
Swollen, red, and tender lumps under the skin are usually either inflamed cysts or small boils. You usually dont need antibiotics for either of these problems.
Inflamed cysts sometimes get better on their own. If they keep getting inflamed, or if they are large or painful, the doctor can open and drain the cyst by making a small incision. Some cysts can be removed surgically. Both are simple procedures that can be done in a doctors office. After that, your cyst will likely heal on its own without antibiotics.
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Neosporin: What To Know
Also called: triple antibiotic ointment
Ingredients: bacitracin, neomycin, and polymyxin B
How to use: Clean the skin injury area. Apply a small amount on the wound 1 to 3 times daily. Cover the area with a sterile bandage if needed.
Average retail cost: $7.14 for a 1 oz tube
Reasons to avoid: severe wounds, allergy to bacitracin, neomycin, polymyxin B, or any inactive ingredient in the ointment
Who Needs Antibiotics For Skin Problems
You need antibiotics only if you have signs of a skin infection. These may include:
- Bumps filled with pus
- Cracks and sores that ooze pus
- Wound that oozes pus or has yellow crusts
- Feeling very hot or cold
- High white blood cell count
- Crusts the color of honey
- Very red or warm skin with other signs of infection
- Wound that is red, painful, swollen, or warm
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What Are Causes And Risk Factors For A Skin Infection
The cause of a skin infection depends on the type of infection.
Bacterial skin infection: This occurs when bacteria enter the body through a break in the skin, such as a cut or a scratch. Getting a cut or scratch doesnt necessarily mean youll develop a skin infection, but it does increase your risk if you have a weakened immune system.
A decreased immune system can be the result of an illness or the side effect of medication.
Viral skin infection: The most common viruses come from one of three groups of viruses: poxvirus, human papillomavirus, and herpes virus.
Fungal infection: Body chemistry and lifestyle can increase the risk of a fungal infection. For example, you may experience multiple bouts of athletes foot if youre a runner or if you sweat a lot. Fungi often grow in warm, moist environments. Wearing sweaty or wet clothes is a risk factor for skin infections. A break or cut in the skin may allow bacteria to get into the deeper layers of the skin.
Parasitic skin infection: Tiny insects or organisms burrowing underneath your skin and laying eggs can cause a parasitic skin infection.
Best For Diabetic Foot Ulcer: Emuaid Over The Counter Antibiotic Skin Cream
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The cream is great for nerve pain, is other than the smell and it is good for essential oil. Further, this is best for itchy skin and it is great with great stuff. Finally, the emuaid over the counter antibiotic skin cream is healthy and it is diabetic.
Most customers found that the antibiotic had made a huge difference. Also, a few also found that the cream is used for skin tears on moms buttocksshes in bed all day. And, a few strongly agree that the cream is more for a skin condition that causes boils under the arms. Without any doubt, this product passed the test and had very satisfied buyers eager to share their experience.
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How Is A Wound Infection Diagnosed
Your healthcare provider will ask about your medical history and examine you. He will ask how and when you were wounded. You may have any of the following tests:
- Blood tests may be done to check for infection.
- X-ray or CT may be done to look for infection in deep tissues or a foreign object in your wound. You may be given contrast liquid to help the pictures show up better. Tell the healthcare provider if you have ever had an allergic reaction to contrast liquid.
- A wound culture is a sample of fluid or tissue that taken from the wound. It is sent to a lab and tested for the germ that is causing the infection.
General Management Of Skin Infections
With antibiotic treatment, signs and symptoms of skin infections begin to improve after approximately 2 to 3 days. If your skin infection does not improve or gets worse , notify your doctor right away. If you are prescribed topical or oral antibiotics, be sure to finish the full course of antibiotics unless otherwise directed. Keep in mind that the length of treatment will differ depending on the type and severity of the infection. Lastly, as is true among all skin infections, you should keep the affected area or wound clean with good skin hygiene.
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Best Yeast Infection Creams 2020
Affecting up to 75% of the entire female population, yeast infections are considered among the most common fungal infections that can happen to a woman. The infection, however, does not exclusively occur in females with up to 15% of males developing it at some point in their lives as well.
On the bright side, a yeast infection can easily be resolved by using the right products. The best yeast infection cream options are accessible and affordable, making them widely available to any man or woman who might need them.
Struggling through an episode of yeast infection? Let this complete guide help you understand more about treatments and products that will work best for your case.
Bacitracin: What To Know
How to use: Clean the skin injury area. Apply a small amount on the wound 1 to 3 times daily. Cover the area with a sterile bandage if needed.
Average retail cost: $5.39 for a 1 oz tube
Reasons to avoid: severe wounds, allergy to bacitracin or any inactive ingredient in the ointment
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What Should I Know About Storage And Disposal Of This Medication
Keep this medication in the container it came in, tightly closed, and out of reach of children. Store it at room temperature and away from excess heat and moisture .
It is important to keep all medication out of sight and reach of children as many containers are not child-resistant and young children can open them easily. To protect young children from poisoning, always lock safety caps and immediately place the medication in a safe location â one that is up and away and out of their sight and reach.
Unneeded medications should be disposed of in special ways to ensure that pets, children, and other people cannot consume them. However, you should not flush this medication down the toilet. Instead, the best way to dispose of your medication is through a medicine take-back program. Talk to your pharmacist or contact your local garbage/recycling department to learn about take-back programs in your community. See the FDA’s Safe Disposal of Medicines website for more information if you do not have access to a take-back program.
How Do Topical Antibiotics Work
The skin is the largest organ of the human body and serves several important functions. As a barrier, your skin prevents harmful bacteria from entering the inside of your body. When the skin has been damaged, as is the case with a cut or a burn, there is an increased risk of infection due to bacteria being able to invade the open wound. The surrounding area of skin damage can then become susceptible to a local infection. A skin infection left untreated can lead to complications as well as an increased risk of infection in the bloodstream, called sepsis.
Topical antibiotics are applied locally to the affected area where they can prevent growth and the spread of bacteria.
Each class of topical antibiotics specifically kills bacteria by a different mechanism. A healthcare professional can help you determine which type of topical antibiotic is appropriate for your condition.
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