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Facial cellulitis is a common bacterial infection that occurs in the facial area. It typically manifests in the form of swelling and redness in a particular area of the face.
The bacteria penetrate through a break in the skin layer of the face. Usually, this infection is caused by Staph or Strep. Facial cellulitis is more prevalent in children with weakened immune systems.
What are the Signs & Symptoms?
Facial cellulitis appears typically as skin inflammation accompanied by some swelling. The reddened area tends to have a visible border.
It is easy to confuse these symptoms with other facial conditions such as acne. However, it is critical to obtain a diagnosis since the condition can be contagious.
A facial sore may appear suddenly. Furthermore, it may begin to grow quickly. The affected area may feel warm to touch. Most cases are not severe, however, complications are possible. The symptoms of serious facial cellulitis are shaking, chills, and hot skin. It is essential to visit a medical health professional immediately if you notice any of these symptoms.
Main Causes of Facial Cellulitis
The primary cause of facial cellulitis is usually a break in the skin. Even, minor cuts and scratches can be enough for bacteria to penetrate. An infected pimple can also cause facial cellulitis.
Generally, the condition tends to affect the cheeks. However, it can affect other facial areas such as the neck and behind the ears. Any open sores around the face are at risk for infection. Skin conditions such as eczema can increase the risk of infection due to scratching. Excessive scratching can damage the layer of facial skin and allow an infection to develop.
What is the Treatment for Facial Cellulitis?
A general practitioner can usually make a diagnosis. A quick examination will often reveal the cause. The usual treatment is a course of antibiotics. Symptoms tend to improve quickly following the initiation of the treatment; however, they can reappear if the treatment is discontinued too early. This makes it essential to finish the course of antibiotics. It is crucial to seek treatment as soon as symptoms manifest.
Otherwise, the condition may spread to the bloodstream and lymph nodes. This can cause serious complications. Generally, it is important to rest during the treatment phase. Additionally, a child’s fingernails should be cut short to prevent any scratching.
There is a range of small precautions that can be taken to minimize the risk of facial cellulitis. Firstly, it is critical to clean any facial wounds properly. Treatment should begin as soon as the wound appears. It is also essential to cover the wound properly.
Secondly, it is crucial to avoid scratching or touching the face as much as possible. Some children develop these habits. Therefore, it is up to the parent to squash these habits as much as they can. Hands should be washed properly with soap to ensure that the infection is unable to spread.
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Last article update: 9/11/2019
Medically reviewed by Dr. Thouria Bensaoula on Sept 06, 2019.