10 Common Questions About Impetigo

Impetigo is defined as a bacterial infection that commonly occurs in children. This type of infection is considered to be highly contagious. It can be transmitted from one child to another through direct contact between them. It is considered to occur whenever bacteria are introduced to the skin of the child due to a cut or an injury. Within a short time, they can grow and make the situation worse.

Causes of Impetigo

It can also be caused due to insect bites. This type of disease is most common among children who are in the age gap of 2-5 years. Since insects are more common when the temperatures of the surroundings are not cool, this type of disease can occur more during summers when the weather is hot, humid, or tropical.

Treatment of Impetigo

Fortunately, this type of disease can be easily treated when complications arise. Normally, the infection does not require any treatment as it gets cured within two weeks after it develops. If one suffers from impetigo, the symptoms generally appear within one week to 10 days after the infection develops within the body. The main symptoms of this infection include blisters and sores that usually dry up after bursting. Other symptoms of this infection solely depend on the type of impetigo.

Types of Impetigo

There are three types of impetigo in nature: non-bullous, bullous, and erythema. Non-bullous impetigo is the most common infection that causes around 80% of cases. In this type, the bacteria enter the body through a small blister which further spreads and leads to swelling in the infected area.

In bullous impetigo, the blisters are smaller in number but are more prominent. They tend to appear near the mouth and at the body's trunk. Erythema impetigo develops red or purple ulcers on the skin by penetrating through the skin layers.

Questions asked about impetigo.

Parents often ask doctors many common questions while consulting them about the cure for impetigo in their kids. Some of these questions include −

  • Are impetigo and hand, foot, and mouth disease the same? - The answer to this question is No. The similarities between the both include being contagious and being found in young children. But the main difference is that hand, foot, and mouth disease is a virus; conversely, impetigo is an infection caused by bacteria.

  • How can impetigo be diagnosed? –The doctor checks the infected skin to confirm if it is impetigo. Moreover, he can perform a simple lab test to verify if the person is suffering from a bacterial infection.

  • Can impetigo occur in adults as it does in children? – The leading cause of impetigo is direct contact with one who already suffers from it. Since adults do not have as frequent and direct contact with children, impetigo is commonly found in children. But there's a possibility that adults can also get this infection if they come in direct contact with such a child suffering from impetigo.

  • What are the causes of impetigo? – The main cause of impetigo is a common bacterial infection that usually occurs in summer when the bacteria enters the skin of the person through a cut, injury, or insect bite.

  • Can antibiotics cure impetigo?– The simple answer to this question is Yes. Antibiotics can be used to cure or heal the infected area within some days. Doctors generally prescribe some antibiotics as a medication to treat bacterial infections.

  • What are the symptoms of a person suffering from impetigo? – If one suffers from impetigo, the infected area of the person usually will develop red spots, which further become blisters that eventually burst. These spots or blisters can be found in areas such as the nose or mouth.

  • How long does it take to heal from impetigo? – By using certain prescribed antibiotic medications, the effects of the disease will generally wear off by 8 to 10 days. Otherwise, without using any medication, the bacterial infection wears off in a few weeks.

  • How is impetigo contagious? – If a person suffering from impetigo touches an object such as a toy, spoon, or any other surface, and if another person touches the same object, then the person can have a bacterial infection, which will further enter the body through any cuts or blisters.

  • What time should an infected person consult a doctor? – The symptoms of these infections can easily be mixed with other skin diseases. However, one should consult a doctor or healthcare provider instantly since the bacterial infection is contagious and can spread to other people and family members. Hence, it is recommended to ask an expert at the earliest.

  • How to prevent the infection from being spread to others? – The patient should be treated with antibiotics, and he should also cover infected skin with bandages all the time. Furthermore, it is also advised that the person keeps his fingernails small so that the bacteria from the infection cannot spread to any surface or object the patient comes in contact with.

The good news is that this kind of illness responds well to treatment quickly and does not result in any severe health complications. Children are most likely to contract this bacterial infection because of their frequent and close contact with other children, dirty surfaces, and environments. Because there are no complications, except the fact that this bacterial function is very contagious and can be passed on to those near the infected person, there is no other issue.


Because treating these illnesses does not require expensive options, it is strongly suggested that one must get it cured as quickly as possible. The use of some antibiotics prescribed by the patient's physician or other healthcare practitioner is all that is required to treat this disease. After a few weeks of disease, this bacterial infection typically clears up without resulting in consequences. This is true even if the individual does not undergo regular therapy or medicines prescribed by a physician. However, it is better to consult an expert on a severe and lasting health issue.

Updated on: 06-Feb-2023


Kickstart Your Career

Get certified by completing the course

Get Started