What is Ringworm? Causes, Symptoms, and Treatment

We often ask ourselves, what is ringworm? How much do we know really of this infection? One thing’s for sure, ringworm has nothing to do with worms. It is rather a fungal infection on both human and animal skin. Its gets the name simply because of the infection that appears as rings with hollow centers manifesting on the skin. The center part is whitish in color, with the appearance of blisters. These blisters at times may ooze off.

What is ringworm? This fungal infection has the capability to affect all parts of the skin, especially those located in sensitive areas, like the face, scalp and sometimes under the fingernails and toenails. When the infection starts to affect the scalp or the beard areas, it may look initially like oversize pimples; but as it progresses, bald patches may start to manifest.

So what is ringworm called in other names? In popular culture, ringworm’s that show up and affect the foot are better known as the “Athlete’s Foot.” People get such infections on their foot from contaminated places like locker rooms and gyms, hence the description.

Ringworm within the toe and finger nails like? Well it can resemble other types of nail fungus known to man. This in particular is difficult to treat since it is mostly hidden under the nails. It can also cause nails to become yellowish and become brittle. When things start to get worse, or the infection has gone unnoticed or unattended, then you can always expect your nails to deteriorate and crumble.

Ringworm Causes and Prevention:

You and everyone else can contact ringworm infections simply through other infected persons and animals via direct contact on affected skin surfaces. Objects also contaminated through contact from infected persons and pet animals are considered platforms for contracting the ringworm infections.

If you are curious on how anyone gets it, then you should also be curious on how to prevent it from happening. Everyone agrees that education itself is your best defense in preventing the fast spread of the infection all over your skin. Taking into consideration on how such infections are contacted and acting on them will better your chances against infection. If you can also have it checked out as early as possible complete with a thorough diagnosis, then you can be sure that you already have a good control over the situation.

Since ringworm’s are generally contagious, it would also be wise to keep your surrounding areas clean at all times. Good hygiene is also another smart preventive measure that can do more wonders not only in preventing such infections from manifesting, but also to your general health and well-being as well.

What is Ringworm

How to Recognize Ringworm Symptoms:

In spite of the name given to it, ringworm really has nothing to do with worms. It is just one simple fungal infection affecting the skin, scalp and nails. This fungal infection is caused by Dermatophytes, organisms found on soil and other areas. It is generally contagious, and anyone can catch it anytime. Recognizing ringworm symptoms as early as possible is important so you can prevent the infection from happening to you.

And you should, since ringworm fungal infections can be very itchy. The discomfort is unbearable at times. People and children who usually spend time together with pet animals on a regular basis are most susceptible to the ringworm discomfort. It can be contracted through direct contract with the affected human and animal skin.

You can also contract the infection by simply touching various fungus-contaminated objects. The common culprits associated with the ringworm spread around the house are our pet dogs and cats. Your personal hygiene is and will always be your best preventive treatment against this infection and other serious ringworm symptoms. You can do well to refrain from using the personal belongings of others. You can also make sure to check your pets regularly so they too will not suffer from ringworm symptoms, and improves your chances of not contracting the infection yourself.

Ringworm Symptoms – When they start to Show Up:

Ringworm symptoms usually begin to manifest on the scalp within 10 to 14 days after contamination. The body ringworm type usually reveals its symptoms much earlier than that. Since ringworm symptoms are not always credited with the dermatophytes infection, doctors always make it a point to get samples of the infected skin for lab testing. The infection’s early stages do not introduce those intense symptoms yet though, which is why you and the rest of the sufferers out there must get a thorough infection diagnosis first through skin analysis.

The usual ringworm symptoms always include the common rash, the reddening and inflammation of the skin, appearance of small blisters, soreness of the affected area, and a whole lot of itching discomforts. Such ringworm symptoms usually take the appearance if circular patches that looks just like a ring. The other rims of the circles are usually raised up with crusty surfaces. As the fungus infection starts to spread outwards, the center portion of the patches will start to heal normally.

For those who suffer from ringworm infections on the scalp, the symptoms are often characterized as little bumps with yellowish affected areas, exfoliation and a sudden and temporary loss of hair. If you happen to have ringworm infection on your feet, then you can expect to have dry, cracked skin complete with some skin scaling and thickening.

Nail Ringworm Symptoms:
Nail ringworm symptoms are usually distinguished as the thickening and the eventual deterioration of the nails, and the appearance of yellow-colored nails. Ringworm that manifest on the face will introduce bright red spotting, inflammations and swelling on the skin area. Always remember that the earlier and faster that these symptoms are recognized and diagnosed, the faster can treatment also work itself through to remove ringworm on your affected skin.

What is Ringworm Treatment?
Getting rid of the fungus infection is not really that hard since you can have several effective treatment options available to you anytime and anywhere. You can utilize over-the-counter medications and treatments. Since everyone is fully aware of the side effects that these commercial medications are bringing with them, people are now turning to traditional and natural treatment methods so as not to complicate things further. You should too.

How to Treat Ringworm Effectively:
 How to treat ringworm effectively often depends on how we regard it in its own world. Within us humans, that fungal infection caused by ringworm would usually start first as a small reddish or pinkish patch that tends to expand outwards. As this lesion expands, its center often clears up, and the whole thing would then look like a ring. When learning how to treat ringworm, you should understand that it might be easily transmitted to others through direct contact since it is generally an infection itself. It can also spread out all over your body because of contact.

If you want to know how to treat ringworm, you should know that there are other conditions may mimic the infection, or that the ringworm itself will mimic others. One interesting fact that you will learn on how to treat ringworm is that the conditions commonly mistaken for the ringworm infection would include eczema, drug rashes, pityriasis rosea, secondary syphilis and viral rashes.

How to Treat Ringworm – The Diagnosis:
You should also care to know how to treat ringworm so you can identify with your doctor in making his precise diagnosis by taking a scraping from the rash for a thorough microscopic analysis, especially if standard treatments are not helping in healing the rash. How to treat ringworm also depends in that gut feeling of yours; if you think you have it then you are most likely correct. And if you just feel fine otherwise, then there’s nothing to worry about treating yourself home. You can always run to your doctor whenever the rash is already spreading or you are already developing additional symptoms.

 In learning how to treat ringworm effectively, you will discover that over-the-counter anti-fungal medications will work best on the problem. The market is full of prescription medications including generic treatments. Making sure that you apply the antifungal cream according to package instructions is one important aspect in how to treat ringworm. You also have to be fully consistent with your treatment. The main reasons why ringworm’s do not heal is the improper use of the correct medication treatments and a wrong diagnosis.

You must see to it that you are able to use the medication cream at least once a day, depending of course on the anti-fungal medication cream that you have chosen. You can expect ringworm lesions to fade away after several days. It is usually during this point that many of the patients will then become lenient in their treatment, confident anyway that their ringworm problems are already solved.

In your case, you must continue to follow the treatment religiously for one whole week after the rash seems to be backing off. This is to make sure that even those microscopic infections have already cleared up. Learning how to treat ringworm may seem easy an easy task to accomplish, but if you are not going to take it seriously, then you can always expect the problem to come back and haunt you.

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