Children who live in close contact with one another are particularly susceptible to transmissible infection. Both at home and at camp, but particularly at camp, one type of infection that is difficult to identify until it has incubated is Impetigo. We train our staff to help campers maintain proper hygiene as well as scan their campers for health issues (in particular impetigo). Despite these efforts, impetigo is, from time to time, spread throughout close friends in a cabin group at camp. When this happens near the end of the camper’s session, we are often unaware of the infection. For this reason, we ask that parents are aware and attentive to this common infection in the days following their camper’s return home.
- Impetigo is a superficial bacterial skin infection most common among children.
- Impetigo is usually caused by the same streptococcus strain that causes strep throat. Often, scratching spreads the lesions.
- The infection is spread by direct contact with lesions and the incubation period is 1–3 days.
- Impetigo is often associated with insect bites, cuts, and other forms of trauma to the skin. Itching is common.
- People who suffer from cold sores have shown higher chances of suffering from impetigo.
- Impetigo also causes flu-like symptoms which may cause tiredness, weakness of muscles, and headaches.
- The diagnosis is made based on the typical appearance of the skin lesion.
- Topical or oral antibiotics are usually prescribed.
- Treatment may involve washing with soap and water and letting the impetigo dry in the air but in more severe cases oral antibiotics are necessary.