Bacterial vs Fungal Infections: How Do We Treat Them Differently?

Health Education
5 mins
Bacterial vs Fungal Infections: How Do We Treat Them Differently?

Bacteria and fungi are in the air we breathe. Our air, food, and water are filled with microorganisms that are usually harmless. However, some can be highly contagious and cause infection, affecting our overall health and well-being. So, a bacterial vs fungal infection – what is the difference? 

We have compiled a list of important factors to be aware of. Let’s take a deeper look.

Fungal vs. Bacterial Infection: What to Consider

Fungal and bacterial infections are fundamentally different. One main difference is the way these two infections are treated. A bacterial infection is treated with antibiotics, and fungal infections are treated with antifungals. It is important to note that antibiotics are ineffective against fungi, so doctors cannot use them during treatment. 

Moreover, some bacteria can develop resistance to antibiotics over time. This makes it more challenging to treat them effectively, especially with an ongoing case. Fungi, though, are less likely to develop resistance to antifungal medications. 

Lastly, bacterial infections are treated in far less time than fungal infections. Fungal infections take longer to treat because fungi are more challenging to eliminate. In most cases, fungal infections require longer-term remedies. 

Microorganisms cause both fungal and bacterial infections. However, they are fundamentally distinct, have distinguishable characteristics, and require different treatments. Consider these need-to-knows!

The Fundamentals of a Bacterial Infection

Bacteria is a single-celled organism that can cause a range of infections. A bacterial infection can be anything from a mild skin infection to a life-threatening illness, such as meningitis or sepsis.

If you have a bacterial infection, you will likely be prescribed antibiotics to kill the bacteria. Antibiotics are highly effective against infections; some common ones include penicillin and amoxicillin. These treatments depend on the patient’s overall health and can last anywhere from a few days to several weeks, depending on the infection severity. 

The Foundations of a Fungal Infection

Fungi are complex and intelligent organisms. They have cells, and there are two main types to watch for. The first is commensal fungi, which are generally harmless and live on and inside of us. They can even play a positive role in our overall health. 

The second type is environmental fungi, which are mold, mushrooms, and yeast. They live in soil and don’t always cause infections. However, they can reproduce spores, which enter the body through our skin or lungs. If you have a weak immune system, this can be serious and harmful, creating damage to your organs. 

To treat a fungal infection, you won’t be prescribed an antibiotic. Specific antifungal medications include topical, oral, and intravenous treatments. The treatment will depend on the infection severity, the type of fungus causing it, and its location on the body. Antifungal medications can last several weeks to several months.

Fungal vs. Bacterial Infection Symptoms

The symptoms of fungal and bacterial infections can vary, and there are certain similarities and differences to note. Depending on the type of bacteria and the location of your condition, some bacterial infection symptoms include:

  • Fever
  • Swelling
  • Pain
  • Redness

Fungal infections have the potential to affect various parts of the body. Some features include the skin, mouth, throat, nails, lungs, and genitals. Symptoms include:

  • Itching
  • Scaling
  • Discharge
  • Redness

If you notice any of these symptoms, you must schedule an appointment with a doctor. That way, you’ll get the necessary diagnosis and appropriate treatment.

Need a Reliable Doctor?

Fungal and bacterial infections are different conditions that require various antidotes. Receiving a proper diagnosis from a healthcare provider and following their recommended treatment plan is the most effective way to treat the infection. They will also offer tips for preventing the spread of infections.

If you are experiencing symptoms, the team at BASS Medical Group is here to help. We have exceptional urgent care that accepts appointments and walk-ins. Moreover, we offer virtual calls so that you can receive high-quality medical advice from the comfort of your own home. 

Contact us today to schedule an appointment!