Methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus or more commonly known as MRSA is an infection caused by a type of staphylococcus (also called staph) bacteria which is resistant to the commonly used antibiotics for treating infections caused by the ordinary staph bacterium. There are two types of MRSA – health associated MRSA and community associated MRSA.
Health associated MRSA infections are contracted by the people who have been to hospitals or other medical facilities like clinics and nursing homes. This type of infection mostly occurs after an invasive procedure such as a surgery, intravenous therapy, dialysis, blood transfusion and others.
The other type of MRSA, also called community associated MRSA is known to infect healthy people too. The disease is transferred through physical contact. People living in the crowded area are more prone to getting infected with this type of MRSA. People involved in wrestling have also been found getting infected by this disease. This type of MRSA generally starts with the eruption of painful blisters on the skin.
What are the symptoms of MRSA?
The first symptom of MRSA is the formation of small red blisters or boils on the skin which convert into deep pus filled painful sores in a short time. These pus filled boils can then only be removed using surgical draining. Many times the bacteria remain restricted to the skin. But they can also penetrate deep and can cause internal infections related to joints, bones, internal injuries, lungs and heart valves. In this case, they can be life threatening too.
If you see boils or blisters not going away in some time, and instead becoming more seriously infected, ensure that you see a doctor. Never try to treat MRSA infection using home remedies. Since MRSA is contagious, others may also catch it upon coming in contact with the infected person. Therefore, it is important that it is treated properly.
What are the causes of MRSA?
Staphylococcus aureus bacteria, more popularly known as staph are normally found in the nose or the skin of more than one third of the world population. Apparently, the staph bacteria are innocuous unless they find their way inside the body through an external wound or a cut. Even after entering the body, they only cause minor problems to healthy individuals. Only rarely they cause serious issues.
These germs are antibiotic resistant
You have been willingly accepting antibiotics from your doctor for even minor problems such as cold and flu. You may have not realized but unnecessary usage of antibiotics has made many bacteria in your body drug resistant. Even when the antibiotics are used for the right purposes they do not kill all the bacteria in the body leaving them immune to these drugs. Bacteria which become resistant to one antibiotic, somehow find the way to become resistant to the other antibiotics as well.
How to treat MRSA?
If you are infected with MRSA, it is not the end of the world for you. However, you do need to be a bit careful and must also see a doctor immediately. If your question is how to get rid of MRSA, here are some tips:
- Get yourself an antibacterial soap and make sure you wash the infected area at least 3-4 times in a day. Also get an antibacterial ointment and regularly apply it over the infected area. In fact, keep the ointment applied for the entire day.
- The staph bacteria are found inside the nose. Since they thrive in the nasal area, it is highly recommended that you consult your doctor and get a special nasal ointment or oil. Application of the ointment will ensure that the bacteria do not spread any further.
- You must consult the doctor when you see the symptoms of MRSA. If your doctor prescribes antibiotics ensure that you take the complete dose. Many people get tempted to quit the medicinal treatment on the signs of improvement. Do not make this mistake. Even if the infection is getting better, ensure that you complete the antibiotics course. This will ensure that the bacteria don’t come back again.
- If you are seeing no signs of improvement even after taking the prescribed medicines, do not just continue with the antibiotics. You must consult your doctor and inform him or her that there is no improvement. Your doctor will take another look and may recommend another antibiotic or an additional treatment.
- Take care of body hygiene well. Do not wear the same clothe without washing. Also, to ensure that the infection does not spread, do not mix your worn clothes with others’.
MRSA is generally harmless but when not taken care of on time, it may become life threatening (well, like quite a few other most medical conditions). It is recommended that when you see the signs of this infection immediately consult a doctor.