What is a Skin Infection?
There are three different kinds of skin infections: bacterial, fungal, and viral. Skin infections can be acquired from environmental factors, spread from another person or the result of another medical condition. Treatment for skin infections will vary based on what type of infection it is and what caused it.
What Causes Skin Infections?
- Bacterial infections are caused by the growth and spread of a harmful strain of bacteria inside the body.
- A viral infection occurs when tiny particles of genetic material infect the body and spread its genetic material to other cells, tricking them into reproducing more of the virus.
- A fungal infection can occur when the ideal environment for fungus to grow develops or contact is made with an infected surface.
There are there are many different types of skin infections. Some are more serious than others and require medications, some will go away on their own. Bacterial, viral and fungal infections can all be addressed with one of our providers at Seattle Skin & Laser.
Some of the most common skin infections we see are:
Tinea Versicolor is a common fungal infection caused by an overgrowth of yeast on the skin, appearing as small, scaly spots on the chest, shoulders, back, and upper arms. Tinea Versicolor is not contagious and can be treated with topical and/or oral medications.
Herpes Zoster (Shingles)
Anyone that has had chickenpox can develop Shingles because it is caused by the same virus. Shingles are known for being a painful condition. Although it’s unclear why the virus “reactivates” people over 50 who have an illness, trauma, or increased stress are more at risk. Shingles typically clear on its own after several weeks, treatment includes oral antiviral medications (if diagnosed within 72 hours) and management of any pain or discomfort using over the counter medicine.