Ringworm in Humans
Ringworm in humans and how to tell if you have ringworm and what you should do to treat it is important information to keep any infection contained before it gets out of hand. Despite the name, ringworm is not caused by a worm, it is a fungal infection. There is a characteristic red ring that appears on the infected person’s skin and this is where the name comes from. The fungus can infect people or animals and can be present in infected soil.
Ringworm in Humans – Identification
Ringworm in humans can be identified as a red circular rash with a middle piece of healthy skin. The rashes usually have raised edges. There is no part of the body that cannot be infected; even the scalp can be infected.
A small pimple that steadily grows larger characterises ringworm of the scalp. Rings of rashes similar to those seen on other body parts might also develop on the scalp. Scalp ringworm becomes really obvious when patches of temporary baldness appear. The hair itself becomes diseased and brittle and then breaks off.
People’s feet can also be infected with ringworm and this is commonly called athlete’s foot. Athlete’s foot is visually different from ringworm on other parts of the body, it does not have the characteristic red ring rashes. It is usually evident from thick flakey skin between the toes and over the counter medication is usually effective as treatment of Athlete’s foot.
Being highly contagious, scratching the affected area and the contact with contaminated bedding or clothing will aid the further spread of ringworm and this could be spread throughout the body. Direct contact with an infected person or animal will cause the person to get ringworm. It does not even need direct contact with an infected person or animal, it can be transmitted by being in contact with an object that has been in contact with an infected person or animal or even through the soil. Symptoms will become visible 10 days after the contact since it has a 10 days gestation period.
Ringworm in Humans – Anti Fungal Cream
Prescription medication or an antifungal cream can be obtained from your medical care provider who will diagnose the fungus. The most effective treatment course is to use the cream as directed over a period of time. Depending on the cream, it is applied to the infected area at least twice a day. The spot(s) should then be covered with clothing or a band-aid. Even if the rash is no longer visible, ensure that you do not stop treatment for the complete length of time that you doctor suggests even if you think it to be excessive. If you discontinue treatment you risk a reoccurrence since there is a 10 day incubation period during which there is no visible sign of the fungus.
Hot water and bleach should be used to wash any house hold fabric and all of your bedding or anything at all that has come into contact with the rash on your body. If the uncovered rash contacts anything subsequently any of the house hold items again you are going to have to repeat the treatment. So you obviously want to avoid your rash coming into contact with any other people or pets.
Ringworm in Humans – Scratching
Itching and the resultant scratching help to successfully spread the infection to other parts of your body. Anytime that you scratch your rash and then touch or scratch another part of your body you have effectively helped the fungus spread. The ringworm is probably one of the itchiest things you can get on your body. However, the ringworm rash is not painful. Treatment will ease the itchiness and until then you have to be strong to prevent the spread of the infection. The worst time is between the third and fifth day after the rash has appeared. The cream does not prevent the itchiness while the rash is clearly visible. You need to be really diligent and persistent when you are dealing with the ringworm fungus. You need to stay on top of ongoing use of the cream for the full recommended length of time and daily you must replace the band-aid. If you are not diligent or if you do not follow instructions then you will have reoccurring outbreaks of ringworm.