Ringworm Explained - Causes and Ringworm Treatment
Read about ringworm (tinea) causes, fungus types, diagnosis, treatment, and prevention of this fungal skin infection.Ringworm, also known as "Tinea", is a contagious fungal infection of the skin, and can exist anywhere on the body. Contrary to its name, ringworm is not caused by a worm, but generally is a reddish to brownish raised or bumpy patch of skin that may be lighter in the center, giving the appearance of a ''ring''. They can be spread from human to human, through contact with animals, communal changing places such as swimming pools. Schools and nurseries are the ideal places for children to catch ringworm. There are many types of ringworm that affects various parts of your body. Some may be unsightly, frustratingly itchy or persistent. This article will focus on the different types of ringworm that affects the body, and the ringworm treatment available.
What causes ringworm?
Although the world is full of yeasts, molds, and fungi, only a few cause skin problems. These agents are called the dermatophytes, which means "skin fungi." Skin fungi can only live on the dead layer of keratin protein on top of the skin. They rarely invade deeper into the body and cannot live on mucous membranes, such as those in the mouth or vagina.
The symptoms of ringworm include:
* Itchy, red, raised, scaly patches that may blister and ooze. The patches often have sharply-defined edges. They are often redder around the outside with normal skin tone in the center. This may create the appearance of a ring. Your skin may also appear unusually dark or light.
* When your scalp or beard is infected, you will have bald patches.
How is ringworm of the skin diagnosed?
Your doctor may easily recognize ringworm by its ring-shaped rash. To confirm that you have the ringworm fungus, your doctor will probably look at a skin scraping under a microscope.
Jock Itch Treatment
Antifungal creams are available for this infection and are, often combined with a mild antiseptic and a mild steroid to reduce itching. Keeping the infected area clean and well ventilated plays an important role in healing this infection. If a topical treatment fails or the infection is widespread, you should see your doctor, where he may prescribe you some medication, such as fluconazole.
How Is Ringworm Treated?
Fortunately, ringworm is fairly easy to diagnose and treat. Doctors usually can diagnose ringworm based on how it looks, but sometimes will scrape off a small sample of the flaky infected skin to test for fungus.
Ringworm is fairly easy to diagnose and treat. Most of the time, the doctor can diagnose it by looking at it or by scraping off a small sample of the flaky infected skin to test for the fungus. The doctor may recommend an antifungal ointment for ringworm of the skin or an oral medication for ringworm of the scalp and nails.
What can be done to prevent the spread of ringworm?
Towels, hats and clothing of the infected individual should not be shared with others. Young children who are infected should minimize close contact with other children until effectively treated. When multiple cases occur, seek advice from your local health department.