Q:

What are some home remedies for cellulitis?

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Quick Answer

According to WebMD, cellulitis is an infection that is treated with antibiotics and skin care prescribed by your doctor. However, some home remedies may hasten healing and prevent the cellulitis from coming back; these include applying warm compresses to the affected area and keeping the area elevated.

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What are some home remedies for cellulitis?
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Full Answer

Cellulitis is a serious infection caused when bacteria penetrate the skin's protective barrier, usually entering through a cut, sore, burn or bite. According to Harvard Health Publications and Drugs.com, cellulitis is most commonly caused by the bacteria Streptococcus pyogenes or Staphylococcus aureus. However, in recent years an antibiotic-resistant bacteria known as community-acquired methicillin-resistant staphylococcal aureus, or community-acquired MRSA, is causing serious infections that are often difficult to treat. For this reason, it is important to see your health care provider if you have any symptoms of cellulitis, such as an area of skin that is red, swollen, warm and painful to the touch. Additionally, if you have a fever, chills, nausea or vomiting, severe pain, extensive swelling or numbness of the area, seek emergency medical attention right away.

Proper skin care is an important factor in preventing cellulitis, especially in the elderly and people with certain medical conditions, such as diabetes, circulatory problems, liver disease or skin disorders such as psoriasis or eczema. The University of Maryland Medical Center recommends taking steps to prevent fungal infections such as athlete's foot by keeping your feet dry and using a moisturiser to prevent cracks and sores. Additionally, support hose may be helpful if you have issues with circulation in your legs or feet.

According to Drugs.com, preventing injury is also important. Wear gloves when gardening or working outdoors; wear long sleeves while hiking or camping; and never go barefoot outside. If you sustain an injury, clean it with warm water and antibacterial soap, then apply antibiotic ointment and cover it with a sterile dressing to keep it clean. Additionally, seek medical attention for any deep puncture wound, animal bite or a deep wound to a joint, hand or foot.

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