Impetigo Care and Control

Impetigo is a skin infection caused by either Staphylococcus aureus (staph) bacteria or group A Streptococcus (strep) bacteria. Impetigo is usually caused when bacteria enter the body through scrapes, cold sores, insect bites or patches of eczema.

 

A person with impetigo will have a skin rash that looks like a group of small blisters or red bumps. After these blisters appear they often burst, and fluid seeps out. When the fluid dries, the blisters become coated with a yellow or grey crust. The blistered area will often be surrounded by redness. The rash will spread if it is not treated.

This rash usually appears around the nose, mouth, and other parts of the face. It can also appear on any skin not covered by clothes, such as arms and legs.

In severe cases of impetigo there may be swelling of the lymph glands in the face or neck. This swelling will be accompanied by a fever.

If you think your child has impetigo, take them to see a health care provider.  Be careful to protect yourself and other children from contact with the infected child.

Impetigo is easily spread at daycares, schools and summer camps. An infected child should stay at home.

If you know of another child who has impetigo, you should watch for signs in your own children, and try to limit your child’s contact with the infected child.

If your child gets impetigo, everyone in your home will need to wash their hands carefully and often, especially after any physical contact.

It is important to wash your child’s clothes and bed linens separately from other’s. Use hot water to wash the clothes, and dry them in a hot dryer.

Children with impetigo should be encouraged not to touch or scratch their sores. Keep their fingernails short and clean. They should also be helped to wash their hands often.

 

Please call the Health Department for more information and download the brochure below.

 

PDF Files: