In today’s world, there are things to know about MRSA that you may have never heard before. MRSA stands for Methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus Aureus and is a bacterial infection that is currently resistant to most types of antibiotics used to treat such infections. That makes it very difficult to treat so it pays to understand the condition and be prepared for situations in which you might be exposed to it. Read through these things to know about MRSA so you can alert your doctor right away if you are concerned that you might have it.
1 You Can Get It a Couple of Ways
One of the most vital things to know about MRSA is how you can get it. According to the Mayo Clinic, one of the most common ways to contract the infection is in a hospital or other type of health care facility. You’d think that these places would be super clean, but that isn’t always the case. You can also get MRSA through skin to skin contact with someone who already has it.
2 Some People Are at a Higher Risk
Obviously, if you visit the doctor often or have a condition that requires regular care, such as dialysis, you are at a higher risk of developing MRSA. However, there are some populations that are more likely to get the infection than others. The Mayo Clinic cautions childcare workers, wrestlers and people who live with a lot of other people that they could get MRSA based on their lifestyle.
3 Symptoms Progress
You aren’t going to just wake up one day and have a raging case of MRSA. It generally starts as a small bump or boil that looks like a bug bite or pimple. As the infection progresses, the bump gets worse and may end up turning into a deep abscess that can lead to infections in your bones, blood or internal organs. That’s why it’s important to get a possible case of MRSA treated right away for the best results.
4 Some People Are Carriers
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, two in ten people carry the MRSA virus. While it’s not super common, it does occur in the general population from time to time and it pays to be on the lookout for it. You can prevent the condition, but it takes some vigilance. If you suspect that you’re a carrier, talk to your doctor about safe ways to keep it from infecting people around you.
5 You Need to Take Action Right Away
If you suspect that you might have a MRSA infection, the CDC urges you to cover it with a bandage right away and keep it in place until you can get a diagnosis. That way you can keep it from spreading. Any time you change the bandage, wash your hands well. Make sure you call your doctor and get an appointment as soon as possible so you know for sure whether it’s MRSA or not.
6 There Are Treatment Options
Doctors still have a few antibiotics that can help stop MRSA, but they aren’t the standard ones used for common infections. In some cases, draining the area is more effective and some people never end up taking any kind of medication for their infection. Your doctor will help you figure out the best course of treatment for you.
7 It’s Preventable
Fortunately, there are steps you can take to prevent getting MRSA in the first place. The Mayo Clinic recommends washing your hands regularly. That’s the best way to prevent all sorts if illnesses and other icky things. You should also keep all wounds covered and avoid sharing personal grooming products, such as razors and towels. You should also take a shower immediately after playing sports or spending time at the gym. Additionally, make sure to sanitize your linens each time you wash them so you can prevent the spread of MRSA among your family members.
Have you ever had or known someone who has MRSA? I haven’t, but it is something that really worries me since I have three kids and we spend our fair share of time at the doctor. Do you have any other tips regarding MRSA?