How can you reduce the risk of getting staph?

What can you do to reduce your risk of getting a staph skin infection?

Many healthy people carry staph bacteria on their skin and in their nose without becoming ill.

Maintaining good personal hygiene through frequent hand washing, bathing or showering daily, and regularly laundering clothing are ways in which you can help to limit your chances of getting a staph infection.

Skin wounds (such as cuts, scrapes and burns) should be quickly cleaned and covered with bandages that are changed regularly. Handle and discard used bandages with care in order to avoid spreading the infection. Make certain to wash your hands before and after caring for the affected skin area. Antibiotic ointments may be applied for additional protection, but consult with your doctor first to determine if the medicine is appropriate for your skin.

Especially if you have a skin condition, such as eczema or psoriasis, use suitable emollient-rich moisturizers to prevent cracks from forming in the skin, which can provide entry points for S. aureus.

If you have a staph infection, you can take steps to limit spreading the infection to others, as well as to other parts of your body, by being careful not to touch the infected skin, keeping it covered, and using either a towel only once or disposable paper towels. Launder used towels in hot water and dry under a hot setting. If someone in the household has a staph infection, avoid sharing towels, bedding, or clothing.