How to treat ringworm of the body

Fact Checked

Ringworm of the body is a fungal infection that forms on the top layer of the skin and it is characterized by a red circular rash with a clear skin in the middle. It can be itchy or not and acquired the name because of its appearance and there is no actual worm involved.

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Ringworm of the body is also known as tinea corporis and is related to tinea pedis, tinea cruris and tinea capitis. Ringworm can be spread by a direct skin-to-skin contact with an infected person or animal. By enrolling in a first aid course, you will learn the steps in managing this condition.

Symptoms of ringworm

Ringworm of the body
Ringworm starts as an even scaly patch found on the skin that can be reddish and itchy.

Ringworm starts as an even scaly patch found on the skin that can be reddish and itchy. This area will develop a faintly elevated border that spreads outward that forms an unevenly spherical ring. The outline of the ring is irregular that looks like the wavy outline of a snake or worm. The interior of the ring is clear, scaly or marked with a scattering red bumps, but in some people several rings will develop at same time and some may overlap.

Causes of ringworm

  • Ringworm can be spread through direct skin-to-skin contact with an infected person.
  • A person can be infected by ringworm by touching an infected animal. It can be spread by petting or grooming dogs or cats. Ringworm can also be found in cows.
  • Ringworm can also be spread by skin contact with infected objects or surfaces like clothing, towels, beddings and linens as well as brushes and combs.
  • Ringworm can also spread by touching infected soil.

This fungal infection sometimes spreads below the skin surface to cause serious illness, but people suffering from HIV/AIDS whose immune system are weak are more susceptible to these infections.

Treatment of ringworm in the body

  • Seek medical help as soon as the ringworm infection occurs since treatment is more effective as long as it is started early.
  • Apply over-the-counter antifungal lotions or creams.
  • Follow the complete cycle of medication and follow the directions given by the doctor. It is difficult to treat ringworm of the body among those who have an immune system that is weakened or currently suffering from another health condition.
  • Wear clothing or use protective bandage to cover the affected area in order to prevent skin contact with other people.
  • Avoid doing activities like swimming in public pools since this will contaminate the water and put other people at high risk.
  • Avoid sharing of personal items like clothing, towels and combs while the person is still infected.
  • Supplement the antifungal treatment with vitamins that contains gamma-linoleic-acid or GLA.
  • Calm the patches of ringworm with papaya slices, a paste made from ground mustard seed or a calendula cream that is made from an ornamental plant called as “pot marigold”.
  • Herbs like tea tree oil and lavender can also help in treating ringworm of the body and use Echinacea for the improvement of the immune system.

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