Public awareness of infectious diseases has increased in recent months, not only due to the current COVID-19 outbreak but also because of antimicrobial resistance (AMR) being declared a top-10 global health threat by the World Health Organization (WHO) in 2019. These global issues have spiked the realization that new and more efficient methods and approaches are urgently required to efficiently combat and overcome the failures in the diagnosis and therapy of infectious disease. This holds true not only for current diseases, but we should also have enough readiness to fight the unforeseen diseases so as to avoid future pandemics. A paradigm shift is needed, not only in infection treatment, but also diagnostic practices, to overcome the potential failures associated with early diagnosis stages, leading to unnecessary and inefficient treatments, while simultaneously promoting AMR. With the development of nanotechnology, nanomaterials fabricated as multifunctional nano-platforms for antibacterial therapeutics, diagnostics, or both (known as “theranostics”) have attracted increasing attention. In the research field of nanomedicine, mesoporous silica nanoparticles (MSN) with a tailored structure, large surface area, high loading capacity, abundant chemical versatility, and acceptable biocompatibility, have shown great potential to integrate the desired functions for diagnosis of bacterial infections. The focus of this review is to present the advances in mesoporous materials in the form of nanoparticles (NPs) or composites that can easily and flexibly accommodate dual or multifunctional capabilities of separation, identification and tracking performed during the diagnosis of infectious diseases together with the inspiring NP designs in diagnosis of bacterial infections.