Ringworm Home Remedies

ringworms

What is Ringworm?

Ringworm is a contagious fungus infection that can affect the scalp, the body (particularly the groin), the feet, and the nails. Despite its name, it has nothing to do with worms. The name comes from the characteristic red ring that can appear on an infected person’s skin. Ringworm is also called Tinea.

What is the infectious agent that causes it?

Ringworm is caused by several different fungus organisms that all belong to a group called “Dermatophytes.” Different Dermatophytes affect different parts of the body and cause the various types of Ringworm:

* Ringworm of the scalp
* Ringworm of the body
* Ringworm of the foot (athlete’s foot)
* Ringworm of the nails

Where is it found?

It is widespread around the world and in the United States. The fungus that causes scalp Ringworm lives in humans and animals. The fungus that causes Ringworm of the body lives in humans, animals, and soil. The fungi that cause it of the foot and on nails live only in humans.

How do people get it?

Ringworm is spread by either direct or indirect contact. People can get Ringworm by direct skin-to-skin contact with an infected person or pet. People can also get it indirectly by contact with objects or surfaces that an infected person or pet has touched, such as hats, combs, brushes, bed linens, stuffed animals, telephones, gym mats, and shower stalls. In rare cases Ringworm can be spread by contact with soil.

What are the signs and symptoms of Ringworm?

Ringworm of the scalp usually begins as a small pimple that becomes larger, leaving scaly patches of temporary baldness. Infected hairs become brittle and break off easily. Yellowish crusty areas sometimes develop.

Ringworm of the body shows up as a flat, round patch anywhere on the skin except for the scalp and feet. The groin is a common area of infection (groin Ringworm). As the rash gradually expands, its center clears to produce a ring. More than one patch might appear, and the patches can overlap. The area is sometimes itchy.

Ringworm of the foot is also called athlete’s foot. It appears as a scaling or cracking of the skin, especially between the toes.

Ringworm of the nails causes the affected nails to become thicker, discolored, and brittle, or to become chalky and disintegrate.

How soon after exposure do symptoms appear?

Scalp Ringworm usually appears 10 to 14 days after contact, and Ringworm of the skin 4 to 10 days after contact. The time between exposure and symptoms isnot known for the other types of Ringworm.

How is it diagnosed?

A health-care provider can diagnose Ringworm by examining the site of infection with special tests.

Who is at risk for it?

Anyone can get Ringworm. Scalp Ringworm often strikes young children; outbreaks have been recognized in schools, day-care centers, and infant nurseries. School athletes are at risk for scalp Ringworm, Ringworm of the body, and foot Ringworm; there have been outbreaks among high school wrestling teams. Children with young pets are at increased risk for Ringworm of the body.

What is the treatment for Ringworm?

It can be treated with fungus-killing medicine. The medicine can be in taken in tablet or liquid form by mouth or as a cream applied directly to the affected area.

What complications can result from it?

Lack of or inadequate treatment can result in an infection that will not clear up.

Is it an emerging infection?

Although Ringworm is not tracked by health authorities, infections appear to be increasing steadily, especially among pre-school and school-age children. Early recognition and treatment are needed to slow the spread of infection and to prevent re-infection.

How can it be prevented?

Ringworm is difficult to prevent. The fungus is very common, and it is contagious even before symptoms appear.  There are several products for ringworm home remedy treatment for humans.

Steps to prevent infection include the following:

* Educate the public, especially parents, about the risk of Ringworm from infected persons and pets.
* Keep common-use areas clean, especially in schools, day-care centers, gyms, and locker rooms. Disinfect sleeping mats and gym mats after each use.
* Do not share clothing, towels, hair brushes, or other personal items.

Infected persons should follow these steps to keep the infection from spreading:

* Complete treatment as instructed, even after symptoms disappear.
* Do not share towels, hats, clothing, or other personal items with others.
* Minimize close contact with others until treated.
* Make sure the person or animal that was the source of infection gets treated.

This fact sheet is for information only and is not meant to be used for self-diagnosis or as a substitute for consultation with a health-care provider. If you have any questions about the disease described above or think that you might have a fungus infection, consult a health-care provider.

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More Resources on Ringworm:

Facts and Information about Ringworm

  1. Ringworm also occurs naturally in soil, so contact with an infected individual is not needed for a pet (or person) to contract ringworm.
  2. Ringworm lesions may be  itchy  and incite scratching in pets.
  3. Ringworm is a skin infection that is caused by a fungus.
  4. Ringworm can affect the skin anywhere on your body (tinea corporis), scalp (tinea capitis),  feet (tinea pedis, or athlete’s foot), groin area (tinea cruris, or jock itch) or nails.
  5. Ringworm cure  – Learn about the best and safest cure for ringworm.


Important Facts

  • The hair becomes infected and brittle then breaks off.
  • Dermatophytes, which are fungi, cause ringworm in humans and animals.
  • Some of the common ringworm symptoms among cats are rough and broken hairs, hair loss especially on head, or paws.
  • You may get ringworm in humans if you touch an object or place where an infected person has touched.
  • Similar fungi cause ringworm in humans, cattle, horses, dogs, cats, and other animals.
  • Ringworm is another common type of fungal skin infection in dogs that is caused by the Microsporum and Trichophyton fungal species.
  • On cows, ringworm symptoms include grayish or ashy areas of skin with a slightly raised circular lesion.
  • Treatment for ringworm of the scalp is found primarily through prescription medications, though some measures may help prevent the spread of the fungus.
  • The development of yellowish crusty areas can form on the scalp as part of the ringworm symptoms.
  • Systemic treatment for ringworm such as oral medications is required for ringworm that affects the nails and scalp.
  • Once your infection is confirmed, yourtreatment for ringwormwill vary according to just where on the body the infection is.


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