If you didn’t already know, ringworm isn’t actually what you might think it is. Despite its name, ringworm doesn’t have anything to do with worms!
Ringworm is a skin infection that is caused by a fungus, not a worm. This type of infection can happen among both humans and animals, and our AFC Urgent Care Ballantyne team provides some further information about it below.
What Is Ringworm?
Like we said earlier, ringworm isn’t a worm, thankfully. It’s a skin infection that’s caused by moldlike fungi that live on the dead tissues of your skin, hair and nails. You can get it in any of these places, and you can also get it on your scalp.
When you get it between your toes, it’s what people call athlete’s foot. If it spreads to the groin, it’s known as jock itch. We’ve listed the common symptoms of ringworm below.
Ringworm Common Symptoms
- Red, itchy, scaly patches, or raised areas of skin called plaques
- Patches that develop blisters or pustules
- Patches that may be redder on the outside edges or resemble a ring
- Patches with edges that are defined and raised
What Causes Ringworm?
Three different types of fungi can cause ringworm: Trichophyton, Microsporum and Epidermophyton. These fungi can live for an extended period as spores in soil, and both humans and animals can contract ringworm after direct contact with this soil.
Ringworm can also spread through contact with infected animals or humans. Luckily, if you get ringworm, there are ways you can treat it. We’ve listed some effective at-home treatments below.
Ways to Treat Ringworm
- Soap and water. When you have ringworm, you need to keep the area as clean as possible. This helps prevent the further spread of the rash and helps keep the affected area under control.
- Apple cider vinegar. Apple cider vinegar has strong anti-fungal properties, so it can help treat ringworm when applied topically to the affected area. To do this, soak a cotton ball with ACV and rub it on the affected area three times per day.
- Tea tree oil. Tea tree oil is about as effective as ACV, as it also has strong anti-fungal properties. Apply tea tree oil directly to the affected area two or three times per day with a cotton ball or swab.
Have further questions about ringworm? Don’t hesitate to reach out to our AFC Urgent Care Ballantyneteam today!