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Treatment Instructions for Neosporin

How Does It Work?

Neosporin ointment products contain three different antibiotics: neomycin sulfate, polymyxin B, and bacitracin zinc. Some products also contain pramoxine, an external analgesic (pain reliever). The cream formulation of Neosporin does not contain bacitracin, as bacitracin is not stable in the cream. The first aid spray sold under the Neosporin name as "Neo to Go®" does not contain any antibiotics.
The inactive ingredients in Neosporin (especially in the ointment) serve to provide a moist healing environment. Contrary to the common belief that "airing out" a wound is best, a moist environment better promotes healing.
Although Neosporin is certainly a "tried and true" favorite, many healthcare providers now recommend using a first aid product without neomycin, as this particular ingredient can cause allergic skin reactions.

When and How to Use Neosporin

Some general considerations to keep in mind during treatment with Neosporin include the following:
  • Apply a small amount of this medication to the skin. Make sure to cleanse the wound before applying it.
  • Do not swallow the medication or apply it to the eyes or large areas of the body. Neosporin products should not be applied inside the nose.
  • You may cover the treated area with a bandage or gauze, if desired.
  • In general, you should not use this product for more than a week at a time. Overuse of antibiotics (including Neosporin) can lead to antibiotic resistance.

Dosing Information

There is only one standard recommended dosage for this medicine, regardless of your age or weight. As always, do not adjust your dose unless your healthcare provider specifically tells you to do so.
(Click Neosporin Dosage to learn more.)
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Neosporin Drug Information

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