Skin infections are not only irritating, painful and unpleasant but can also have adverse psychological effects on the sufferer if they persist for long. People with a weak immune system are more prone to skin infections. The culprits behind skin infections are mostly micro-organisms, macroparasites, and fungi. Bacterial infection and fungal infections are the most common of all skin infections. Let us explore more about fungal, bacterial and yeast infections.
Common Skin Infections
Bacterial Skin Infections
Bacterial infections are the most common skin infections and are usually caused by two types of bacteria; Staphylococcus aureus and Streptococcus. The list of these infections is given below which mostly are the staph skin infections.
Also known as St. Anthony’s Fire, the skin rash appearing due to this bacterial skin infection is bright red with a swollen white patch easily recognizable from the normal skin. Rashes are accompanied by excruciating pain.
This bacterial skin infection targets deeper skin layers including subcutaneous tissue and dermis. The infection starts from deeper layers first and then appears on the skin, hence the person experiences fatigue, chills, and fever. This infection is swollen, red and painful and mostly affects neck and head in children. In adults, it affects legs and arms in most cases.
Folliculitis is the inflammation of hair follicles only and that is why it is called folliculitis. Among various types of folliculitis, hot tub folliculitis is the most common one and it is caused by Pseudomonas aeruginosa bacteria.
Unlike folliculitis, furuncle has an effect on a wider area of skin called pilosebaceous unit which includes the sebaceous gland, hair follicle, hair shaft, and the pili muscle. This infection mostly affects neck, face, armpits, and buttocks. A carbuncle is a severe form of furuncle skin infection and it comprises of a group of closely formed furuncles.
Though it is a bacterial infection due to its appearance, it is mostly mistaken as a fungal infection. This infection appears as pink rashes surrounded by boundaries that distinguish them from normal skin but later on, these boundaries blend into the normal skin. Most common targets of this infection involve those arts where skin comes in contact with skin e.g. armpits, last two toe fingers, and groin.
This staph skin infection affects the epidermis. It affects skin areas having small breaks, like insect bites, cuts, etc. impetigo can be bullous or nonbullous. The latter is more common and usually affects the face and limbs. The infected area appears red and has yellow crust beneath it.
Fungal Skin Infections
Fungi living on our body are though unproblematic but sometimes they may cause some infections on the skin due to certain reasons. They target those areas which remain warm and moist. A list of fungal skin infections and skin yeast infections is given below.
- Athlete’s Foot
It is one of the most common fungal skin infections and occurs on feet. It is more common in men than in women and mostly results due to wearing tight-fitting shoes. Athlete’s foot skin infection can be interdigital, moccasin or vesicular. The former type is the most common among the three.
Ringworm is a contagious fungal infection and it has nothing to with worm. This infection looks like red and circular sore with scaly skin. Thus these patches appear like ringworm and they can be in any body part.
- Jock Itch
Also called tinea cruris, Jock itch is caused by tinea fungus. This rash is red in colored and is ring-shaped. It occurs in warm and moist body areas like inner thighs and genitals. The symptoms include itching and burning of the groin or inner thighs and the redness of the skin.
- Tinea Versicolor
It only affects the upper layer of skin or epidermis and is hence a superficial fungal infection. Caused by pityrosporum ovale and pityros porum orbicular, the infection can be identified by hypopigmentation or hyperpigmentation around the affected area.
In addition to the enlisted fungal and bacterial infections, yeast infections or cutaneous candidiasis are also very common and are caused by yeast-like fungi called Candida. Diaper rashes in infants and nail infections are examples of yeast infections. Though they can target any body part oral thrush, occurring in the mouth, and vaginal yeast infections are most common.