Causes of Impetigo

The main causes of impetigo are the streptococcus (strep) or staphylococcus (staph) bacteria. Impetigo is a skin infection that is highly contagious. It can spread from direct contact with the infected person or through personal objects such as toys, clothing, and household items that have been handled by the infected person. The bacterium that causes impetigo enters the skin through a cut or wound and the infection then spreads to other parts of the body. There are also cases where bacteria live in the nasal passages and spread from there to other parts of the skin. Breaks in the skin that lead to an impetigo infection may be caused by bites (of the animal, insect, or human variety), or any injury or trauma to the skin.

Risk Factors of Impetigo:

  • Impetigo tends to be more common among children between the ages of 2 and 5 though adults can also develop the condition.
  • Since impetigo is spread through contact, it is commonly seen in settings such as nursery and playschools or dormitories.
  • People living in warm and humid climates are also more prone to developing such skin infections.
  • Children and adults from lower income groups especially those living in unhealthy conditions are more vulnerable to impetigo.
  • Children and adults with eczema and other skin conditions could also develop impetigo.
  • As an adult, if you suffer from other skin disorders or viral infections, you may be susceptible to impetigo as well.
  • People who are diabetic or suffer from other autoimmune disorders are more likely to develop impetigo.