What is Belly Button?
The belly button or clinically known as “umbilicus” is a hollowed part of the upper abdomen that serve as the attachment of the umbilical cord and a conduit between the fetus and placenta during embryo development.
During the delivery period of the new born baby, the long hallowed tube of the umbilical cord is being cut leaving the shortened cord that looks like button. Some instances occur to cause the belly get infected such as piercing but other environmental factors can also give rise to a major treat to cause the septicity like yeast and bacteria to invade the body.
Belly Button Infection Causes
The infection of the belly button is common due to its shape; it is highly susceptible to foreign bodies to get infected. As a matter of fact, the belly button is the most perfect for microbial growth due to its features of being dark, warm and moist.
According to the research published in the journal of Plos One Journal, the belly button contains more than 2,300 species of bacteria that can possibly give rise to some infection but for healthy individuals it may not be a major threat to cause health problem.
The relatively known causative factor of belly button infection are the bacteria or yeast overgrowth. Some listed items below are the main contributory factor that leads to infestation;
The sweat, soap residues and other substances that are left deposited in the navel cavity can trigger bacterial growth. As the belly button is the perfect place for bacterial growth it can easily develop some microbial cavity to thrive and lead to infection.
This is the condition of a small lump or bump under the skin. Although, this is type of a cyst however it is not cancerous. The sebaceous cyst can occur in different parts of the body; they often found in the face, neck, upper back, chest or abdomen, but can occur on other sites of the body too. The cyst can sometimes irritating like too much rubbing can cause irritation and lead to infection.
The infection occur in belly button as it caused by the fungi is a condition where the yeast erodes on the healthy skin surface, causing an increase in blood flow to the area. The infection results to sudden itchiness and sometimes intense irritation.
Another factor is the Urachal Cysts, a type of fibrous remnant of the allantois, a type of channel that drains the urinary bladder of the fetus that connects and runs within the umbilical cord. The cyst occurs in a persistent part of the urachus, presenting as extra peritoneal mass in the umbilical region.
Some medical complications can also trigger belly button infection. One of the causative factors is being diabetic. People who are suffering from diabetes are susceptible for naval infections. The present of cottage cheese-like that discharge is typically found in the belly button caused by diabetes.
Having artistic design to your body such as piercing is a form of body art. However, shrilling your belly button with pins can trigger also to some infection. According to Statistics Brain Research Institute, belly button is the most popular and in demand location for piercing for women. The research found out that 31% of the body piercing had come about to complications. Generally, the piercing creates an open wound that until the wound heals, it can harbor all kinds of bacteria and vulnerable to infections.
Signs and Symptoms
The signs and symptoms occur in particular infected belly buttons are varied depending on the severity of the infestation. The initial sign of the red flag status of your belly is the appearance of the abscess, it is the stage where your navel appears to swell and accompanied by mild pain. As the infection persists, more serious symptoms can arise such as,
- Tenderness and warmth around the naval area
- Intense irritation
- Redness or skin color changes
- Appearance of abscess (caused by bacteria)
- Foul odor
- Stomach upset, nausea, vomiting, fever
- Belly button discharge (green, yellow, gray, or brown)
The appearance of symptoms mentioned above can be varied. If some symptoms persists and causing severity of the infection is an indication that you need to have a short trip with your doctor.
Treatment & Home Remedies
As we determined the cause of the infection, it is time to give remedy on the issue. Some DIY (Do it yourself) remedy can be one way to rid of the infection.
Warm Salt Water
Usage of the warm salt water can remediate the infection. The heat from the water can help to increase the blood flow of the infected area, while the salt absorbs the moisture and act as disinfectant.
Keep the Belly Always Clean
Keeping healthy hygienic practices keeps the foreign pathogens to go away. Always clean the belly with soap during shower then leave it thoroughly dry. You can also apply some water-based ointment or antibacterial lotions 2 or 3 times a day until the infection stops.
Compressing the infected area with warm compress can alleviate the pain and swelling. It is advisable to use some washcloth in warm water and wring the excess water applying it on to your belly.
Apply Tea Tree Oil
The tea tree oil also known as the “melaleuca” is a powerful substance that has antiseptic property. It has the ability to cure wounds and remediate the proliferation of the infection.
Rub the belly with Alcohol
The alcohol is well known for its property as the disinfectant. Frequent or using alcohol can eliminate some foreign pathogens such as bacteria and yeast to prevent cultivation of microorganism.
Doing a solution to remediate the infection is the use of white vinegar. The white vinegar contains bioactive components like acetic acid, gallic acid, catechin, epocatechin, caffeic acid and etc. giving it as a potent antioxidant, antimicrobial and other health properties. The acidic nature of this solution eradicates the proliferation of the bacterial and yeast overgrowth and stops its propagation.
Remove Jewelry from the Belly
Eliminating piercing objects on your belly can lessen the susceptibility to infection.
Belly Button Infection Pictures