Quick Guide: How Do You Get Rid Of Ringworm Fast?

Dr. Sneha Ganatra
November 17, 2020

Skin infections are a fairly common occurrence, especially if you’re exposed to unclean environments. These normally present with a rash or some form of skin legion and can have side effects like skin darkening or permanent hair loss when left untreated. A particularly bad infection is the ringworm infection, which is actually a misnomer as it caused by a fungus. It is highly contagious and is common among children due to poor personal hygiene.

Naturally, this is an infection you should actively try to avoid and the best way to do so is to be thoroughly informed about it. Being aware of the different ringworm causes can help you either avoid it or identify symptoms or early signs before the infection spreads or worsens. Here’s all you need to know about the ringworm infection.

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What is a ringworm infection?

Ringworm is an infection of the skin caused by a fungus that generally presents as legion in the shape of a worm. These mold-like parasites live on the dead tissue of skins by feeding on the keratin protein. Ringworm is highly contagious and those with suppressed or weakened immune systems will have trouble fighting it off. It is also known as dermatophytosis or a dermatophyte infection, which can be caused by over 40 species of fungi named Microsporum, Trichophyton and Epidermophyton.

Ringworm affects animals and humans as well, which is why it is important to prioritise hygiene to prevent it. This infection can infect several areas of the body and each has a different nomenclature. It can help to know what these specific infections are called if you’re looking to resort to home remedies. Here is a list to refer to.

  1. Tinea pedis: Athlete’s foot
  2. Tinea curis: Groin infection or jock itch
  3. Tinea corporis: Body/skin ringworm
  4. Tinea capitis: Scalp ringworm
  5. Tinea uguium: Infection of the nail bed
  6. Tinea barbae: Beard infection

What are the different ringworm causes?

Primarily, ringworm is caused by a fungus but other factors like humidity, temperature, genetic disposition also have a role to play. Ringworm is generally caused by coming into contact with the fungus, which can be transmitted in the following ways:

    • Through soil: The fungus can survive as spores in the soil and coming into contact with it directly can cause infection.
    • Skin contact: Physical contact with an infected person can cause the infection.
    • Pets: It isn’t uncommon for animals to get infected with ringworm and coming into contact with them can spread it to you.
    • Objects: The fungus can linger on surfaces like clothes, towels, combs, brushes and sheets used by the infected.

Besides these causes, there are several risk factors that you should know about. Watch out for the following.

      • Tight restrictive clothing with excessive sweating
      • Weakened immune system
      • Warm climate
      • Sports with skin-to-skin contact
      • Use of public showers or locker rooms

What are the symptoms of a ringworm infection?

Primarily, a ringworm infection presents as a patchy area of itchy skin, but this depends on where you’re infected. Some of the other symptoms include:

      • Scaly patches with raised edges called plaques
      • Patches of skin with blisters or pustules
      • Thick and discoloured nails
      • Bald patches
      • Swollen glands
      • Tiredness
      • Flaky skin

What are the approaches to ringworm treatment?

There are two main approaches to treatment: lifestyle changes and medicines for ringworm. Ideally, treatment should involve both as this gives you the best chance of a complete recovery. For medication, doctors may prescribe topical antifungal creams, gels or ointments. In more severe cases, oral medications like terbinafine or griseofulvin (Gris-PEG) may be required.

As for the lifestyle changes, doctors will suggest:

      • Wearing loose clothing
      • Drying infected areas thoroughly
      • Disinfecting the surround and washing clothing and bedding regularly

How do you get rid of ringworm fast?

Getting rid of ringworm fast requires you to first identify the symptoms and approach a dermatologist for specific medication, if needed. However, if it doesn’t require medication, here are few home remedies that may offer near-instant relief.

      • Turmeric paste
      • Coconut oil massages
      • Apple cider vinegar application
      • Antibacterial soaps
      • Aloe vera gel scrubs

Most of these natural remedies offer relief and with proper home care, you can get rid of the infection soon.

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How can you prevent a ringworm infection?

These are the practices you can put into place to avoid a ringworm infection:

      1. Wear shoes with proper air circulation
      2. Change socks and underwear daily
      3. Avoid sharing personal items like towels, sheets, clothing or handkerchiefs
      4. Maintain good personal hygiene
      5. Clean yourself after playing with pets
      6. Shower immediately if you play close-contact sports
      7. Keep your fingernails clean and clipped
      8. Dry your skin and keep it clean if exposed to soil

Given its highly contagious nature, it is important to pay close attention to what ringworm is caused by and steer clear of these factors. Moreover, if you do develop the infection, you can always try a few home remedies to ease the symptoms before getting medical care. This is a recommended approach as an untreated ringworm infection has life-long complications. Thankfully, with the Bajaj Finserv Health App, it doesn’t have to come to this as you can find the best specialists in your locality and get treatment remotely.

With this app, you have access to the suite of benefits that come with telemedicine. You can find the best dermatologists in your area, book appointments at their clinics online and even opt for video consultations, if needed. With a ringworm infection, opting for video consults can be quite favourable, especially since it reduces the risk of further spread. What’s more, you can also get tested and send over digital patient records with the Health Vault feature for the complete online healthcare experience. To take advantage of these features today, download the app for free on the Google Play Store or the Apple App store today.