Staphylococci, or staph bacteria, are naturally occurring on all people. Staph is normally present on the skin and nostrils. Our body usually does a great job of protecting us from a Staph infection, but most people will experience infection from staph bacteria at some point in their lifetime. Staph is generally considered a harmless type of bacteria. It is living all over us and all around us and even lives in the most sterile human environments, including surgery rooms and even the International Space Station. Skin boils (furunculosis) is one of the most common varieties of staph infection.

The most sanitary environments help support more dangerous populations and strains of staph. In such environments, as weaker strains are killed off, the more pervasive and dangerous strains become dominant. It is simply impossible, today, to sufficiently make an environment 100% free from bacteria. Staph infections can cause boils, other skin infections, blood infection, and even organ infection. It is considered one of the most dangerous species of bacteria because it is nearly impossible to irradiate and is one of the most pervasive types of bacterial infections that, in some cases with more dangerous strains, are not reliably able to be treated with antibiotics.

Staph infections are bacterial colonies that most often occur in the skin, under the top layer of skin. Boils, furuncles, carbuncles, lesions, folliculitis, acne, and other types of skin infection are a result of staph infection, with acne and boils (furuncles) being among the most common types of infection. Staph can also enter have contact with the bloodstream, when a person scratches an infection, or when there is other breakage in the skin. In such cases, bacteria are usually destroyed by natural antibodies and other natural defense mechanisms in the human body. In extreme cases, when a person’s immune system is unable to combat a particular strain of staph, blood, tissue, vital organs, even bone can be infected by staph.

More dangerous strains of staph, such as certain strains of Staphylococcus aureus, have a higher likelihood of infecting a person’s blood and internal systems. These strains are becoming increasingly difficult for the medical community to treat, given their increasing resistance to antibiotics. Staph aureus includes MRSA, (Methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus), which are strains of staph that are resistant to most types of antibiotics. Such dangerous strains occur more often in hospitals, locker rooms, and public restrooms, with hospitals carrying the deadliest strains, by far. Why? Because hospitals are heavily sanitized and therefore kill off weaker strains of staph, causing more harmful strains to increase in population. This, coupled with the fact that there are large numbers of people with compromised immune systems entering and leaving hospitals daily, makes hospitals among the worst place to be exposed to staph bacteria.

People with lower immune systems, particularly those with a history of recurring boils, should take extra precaution when visiting hospitals and public shared spaces, such as gyms and spas. Keeping skin clean and sanitized before, during, and after visiting such places is extremely important for people who may have a higher likelihood of contracting a staph infection or people with compromised immune systems. You should clean all areas of the body vigilantly when visiting such places. It is critically important to vigilantly clean, with antibacterial soap if possible, under the arms, between thighs, under breasts, in the groin area, and on the buttock region.

Immune health and hygiene are a person’s primary defenses against staph infections. Practicing good nutrition, maintaining a healthy diet, and getting regular exercise are, when combined, is one of the best approaches to supporting a healthy immune system. A good immune system helps the body to naturally protect itself from staph and skin boils. Weight loss may also help. Studies show that people suffering from obesity may have a greater tendency to get Staph infections. Staph bacteria tend to thrive in warm, moist places on the skin, particularly in regions where there are skin-to-skin pockets or folds of tissue. These areas also tend to incur a great deal of friction with bodily movements. As legs and arms move, these regions can experience minor breakage in the skin, exposing hair follicles with tiny lesions where staph can enter and populate.

Most people that experience dermal staph infections, such as boils, will heal naturally. Boils will eventually either go away on their own, or they will rupture and gradually heal. People who experience larger and more severe boils will often experience recurring boils. As each new boil appears, it expands the skin, creating a pocket beneath the skin. Staph bacteria tend to thrive in these pockets and all that it takes is for staph to find their way inside, through a hair follicle.