Impetigo is a contagious skin condition that leads to the formation of sores and blisters on the skin. This skin infection is pretty common in small children, but also affects adults. Additionally, it rarely poses a risk for affected persons.The infection usually occurs on the face, arms, neck region and legs. The bacteria responsible for this infection are the staphylococcus aureus and the streptococcus pyogenes.
The bacteria access the skin wherever the skin is punctured usually through injuries, bites or cuts. In some instances, the infection sets in as a result of pre-exisiting skin conditions such as eczema.Some of the risk factors of this condition include poor hygiene, skin infections, a weakened immune system as well as extremely warm weather. Some of the symptoms of impetigo include red sores on the skin, a crust-like layer that forms when the small swellings pop as well as blisters.
This is often accompanied by itchiness and rash formation. For most people, the condition improves on its own after a couple of weeks. Treatment is largely dependent on the severity of the condition. Mild cases respond well to proper hygiene and a number of home remedies. If the infection is severe, however, it is important to get immediate medical intervention to contain the spread of the infection. This also helps provide much-needed relief from the symptoms of impetigo.
1. Tea Tree Oil:
Time Required: 30 Min
What You Need: 3 Drops of tea tree oil, 1 tablespoon of olive oil (carrier oil), cotton wool and warm water.
Tea tree oil is a must-have for anyone who needs a quick and effective home remedy for the natural treatment of impetigo. This essential oil is a popular choice because of its potent antibacterial properties that kill the causative bacteria. This not only prevents the spread of the infection, it also provides relief from the itchiness and inflammation on the affected skin.
Add olive oil prior to the application of this remedy to prevent further irritation as tea tree oil is a strong remedy. Below are the simple directions you need to follow to get the best of this oil’s healing properties. Note that tea tree oil MUST never be used internally as it is extremely toxic to the body’s internal organs.
- Place a few drops of the tea tree oil in a shallow container and add the olive oil.
- Mix the two and then soak the cotton wool in the oil mixture.
- Apply the oil on the affected skin and leave on for 20 minutes.
- Rinse with warm water.
- Repeat thrice daily until the infection clears.
2. Raw Honey (Preferably Manuka Honey):
Time Required: 30 Min – 2 Hrs
What You Need: Raw organic honey and warm water .
Get honey’s remarkable healing properties when you need a natural remedy for the treatment of impetigo. Honey is packed with antibacterial properties that come in handy in the management of the condition. The honey not only kills the bacteria, it also improves the health of the skin, which in turn speeds up the process of healing. Manuka honey, a product from New Zealand, is preferred because of its potent healing properties. The application process is rather simple, and will only take 20 minutes of your time per session.
- Apply a thick layer of the honey on the affected skin.
- Leave the honey to dry on its own for at least 20 minutes (but for as long as 2 hours if you have the time).
- When the time elapses, simply rinse the skin using warm water. Use this remedy as often as you need to.
- You may also add the honey to your daily diet to strengthen your immune system.
Time Required: 45 Min
What You Need: 3 Cloves of garlic, 2 tablespoons of sesame oil, strainer and cotton wool.
Experience the healing goodness of garlic when used for the natural treatment of impetigo. Garlic is packed with sulfur-based compounds that are integral in eliminating the bacterial populations responsible for the infection. Regular use over a period of time reduces the spread of the infection while lessening the severity of the bacterial infection. Sesame oil is added because it compliments the garlic’s healing properties. Prepare the garlic as follows.
- Peel and chop the garlic into small pieces before frying in the sesame oil.
- Fry for a few minutes before turning off the heat and allowing the remedy to cool down.
- Pass the mixture through a strainer in order to discard the used garlic pieces.
- Apply the oil mixture on the affected skin and leave on for half an hour.
- Use this remedy thrice daily for best results.
NB: It helps to prepare the remedy in bulk so as to save on time and ease the application process, but make sure you refrigerate the mixture.
4. Heat Therapy:
Time Required: 30 Min
What You Need: Clean washcloth and hot water. Blow dryer (optional).
Heat therapy is one of the most effective home solutions for the natural treatment of impetigo. This is because the heat present destroys the structure of the bacteria, thus controlling the spread of the infection. In addition to this, the heat helps dry up the sores that develop as a result of the skin infection. Regular use of this remedy is a great cure for impetigo. All you need for this remedy is a clean washcloth and hot water. Take care not to scald yourself with the hot water. For this reason, avoid this remedy for very small babies.
- Place the clean washcloth in the hot water and soak for a few minutes.
- Squeeze the excess water and proceed to place the cloth on the affected area.
- Pat the hot cloth on the affected skin for a few minutes at a time until the cloth becomes cold.
- Repeat this procedure thrice daily until the impetigo clears.
- In the absence of this form of therapy, you may use a blow dryer (with minimal settings) for the same effect.
5. White Vinegar:
Time Required: 45 Min
What You Need: 2 Teaspoons of white vinegar, 2 cups of warm water, cotton ball, skin antibiotic cream and gauze.
When it comes to treating sores on the skin, one of the best home remedies to use is white vinegar. Impetigo causes fluid-filled blisters and sores to develop on the skin. When white vinegar is used on the skin, it cleans the affected skin and destroys the bacteria that causes the infection. The directions below constitute simple steps to preparing your own home-made antibiotic solution for the natural treatment of impetigo.
- Dilute the white vinegar using warm water and mix well.
- Soak the cotton ball in the dilute white vinegar solution for a few minutes and then pat the wet wool on the affected skin.
- Let the remedy air-dry before applying the antibiotic skin cream.
- Cover the affected skin with gauze or a bandage.
- Use this remedy thrice daily until the infection clears. Remember not to scrub the skin when rinsing to avoid further skin irritation and likely bursting of the blisters.
6. Olive Oil:
Time Required: 15 Min
What You Need: Virgin olive oil, dropper and cotton wool.
Harness the therapeutic healing properties of olive oil whenever you need to treat impetigo. Olive oil is not only an excellent skin moisturizer, it also has active ingredients that help destroy the bacterial populations responsible for the infection. These compounds are known as oeuropein and rutin, both of which are effective against the two bacterial species. For speedy recovery, use the olive oil on the affected skin at least five times daily. Virgin olive oil is preferred because it has more potent healing properties.
- Place 5 drops of the virgin olive oil on the cotton wool and apply on the affected skin.
- Make sure that the olive oil soaks into the sores and blisters to clear the infection quickly.
7. Coconut Oil:
Time Required: 20 Min
What You Need: Pure coconut oil and cotton wool.
The wondrous benefits of coconut oil are not just restricted to healthy glowing skin; they also come in handy for the natural treatment of impetigo. Coconut oil is rich in natural fatty acids that create a toxic environment for the infection-causing bacteria. This in turn, destroys the bacteria responsible for impetigo, and improves the healing process. As with most of the remedies listed above, regular consistent use is key to get rid of the infection.
- To get relief from impetigo, simply soak the cotton wool in the coconut oil.
- Dab the wet wool on the affected skin, making sure you focus on the sores and blisters.
- You may allow the oil to dry on the skin without rinsing as the oil’s moisturizing properties make it an ideal remedy.
8. Grapefruit Seed Extract:
Time Required: 20 Min
What You Need: 3 drops of Grapefruit seed extract, some warm water and cotton wool.
Grapefruit seed extract (abbreviated GSE) is an effective solution for the natural treatment of impetigo. Rich in antioxidant properties, the use of this extract ensures that the bacteria responsible for the infection do not survive. The extract is also a potent antibacterial that helps restrict the spread of the infection across the skin. If you are looking for a gentle skin cleanser and disinfectant, look no further than GSE. In the absence of the extract, you can always use GSE supplements for the same effects. Use this remedy as outlined in the steps below.
- Dilute the GSE by mixing with water well.
- Soak the cotton ball in the dilute GSE solution for a few minutes and then apply on the affected skin.
- This may cause a tingling sensation, but it passes after a short while. Most of all, it helps cure the infection after a few days.
- You may add GSE supplements to your diet, but make sure you seek your doctor’s advice prior to this.
9. Goldenseal Herbal Tea:
Time Required: 30 Min
What You Need: 1 Teaspoon of goldenseal powder, 1 cup of hot water and a strainer.
Goldenseal herb is an excellent remedy for the treatment of impetigo, thanks to its antibacterial properties. The herb effectively disinfects the sores and helps clear the blisters. The herb has also been shown to strengthen the immune system, making it an ideal home remedy. Other options available for the use of this remedy include the use of goldenseal cream or herbal supplements.
- Prepare the tea by placing a teaspoon of the powder in the water and steeping for 15 minutes.
- Strain the mixture and allow to cool for a few minutes.
- Rinse the affected skin using the warm tea twice daily until the infection is cleared.
- Alternatively, apply the cream on the affected skin or take the herbal supplements following your doctor’s directives.
10. Aloe Vera Gel:
Time Required: 30 Min
What You Need: Fresh aloe vera leaf and warm water.
It is impossible to list home remedies for impetigo treatment without making mention of aloe vera gel. The gel, thanks to its anti-inflammatory and anti-bacterial properties, is an excellent way to treat this skin infection. Additionally, the presence of antioxidants in the gel helps repair the skin as healing progresses. Use a freshly cut aloe vera leaf for this purpose.
- Slice the aloe vera leaf to expose the oozing side and release the gel.
- Rub the gel on the sores and blisters as gently as you can.
- Let the gel dry before rinsing with warm water.
- Use aloe vera gel twice daily and monitor the progress of your skin.
Other home remedies that you can use to treat impetigo include colloidal silver and calendula which both help eliminate the bacterial infection. It also helps to eat a healthy diet as this improves the immune system and helps the body recover faster. Proper hygiene is imperative as this helps prevent the bacteria from proliferating on the skin, and reduces the risk of infections arising from cuts and injurie