Ringworm 

Many bacteria and fungi live on our body. Some of these can cause infections. Ringworm is a common fungal infection also known as tinea, which occurs when a type of fungus called dermatophytes grows and multiplies on the surface of the skin.

Ringworm lives on the outer layers of the skin, nails, and scalp. It is characterized by a red ring of small blisters or of scaly skin. When the fungus affects an area it spreads out so new rings are developed at the edge of the old ring.

Ringworm occurs in people of all ages, bur children are the most prone. Ringworm is very contagious and can be passed from person to person by contact with infected skin areas or by sharing personal care items.

The fungus that causes ringworm thrives in warm, moist areas. Places most common to catch fungi are showers, swimming pools and locker rooms.

Ringworm also affects pets. The infection can pass from pets to people through direct contact.

 

The types of ringworm or tinea are the following due to the located area

  • Tinea barbae, which appears on the bearded area of the face and neck
  • Tinea faciei which appears on the face
  • Tinea corporis, which appears of the body skin, especially on the arms and legs.
  • Tinea pedis, which appears on the feet
  • Tinea cruris (also called jock itch) which appears on the groin area
  • Tinea capitis which appears on the scalp
  • Tinea manus which appears on the hands
  • Tinea unguium (also known as onychomycosis) which appears on the nails

 

Symptoms

  • To the face, you will have red scaly itchy patches, ring-shaped, oozing and blistering with indistinct edges.
  • To your hands, (especially fingers and palms) you will have thickening (hyperceratosis), burning, cracking, itching and scaling.
  • To your nails, they will become thick, discoloured and crumbly.
  • To your beard, you will have itching and sometimes bald patches.
  • To the scalp, you will appear bald spots.
  • To your feet, you may symptom either the tinea pedis known as “athlete's foot” which is characterized from scaling and inflammation with itching and burning irritation in the toes, either the tinea pedis known as “moccasin distribution”, which cause blisters between the toes, on the heels and on the sole. It is an extremely common fungal infection.
  • To your body skin, in particular arms and legs. The fungus produces round spots which are characterized from an active outer border that slowly grow and create new spots when altogether they seem as blister-like lesion or scaling raised areas.
  • To the groin area, it appears with a reddish-brown color extending from the folds of the groin down onto one or both thighs

 

Recommendations

  • Avoid clothes that rub against and irritate the area.
  • Keep affected area clean and dry.
  • Wash clothing after each wearing while you are infected
  • Men it is better to wear boxer shorts while for women it is better to avoid panty hose.
  • Apply crushed raw garlic to the affected area. Cover it with gauze.
  • Do not share clothing, combs, head gear, towels or other personal care items.
  • Wear shoes in gym, pools or locker rooms to avoid athlete’s foot.
  • Wash your hands after touching a pet with bald spots.
  • In case of ringworm on the scalp, use daily a shampoo that contains selenium sulphide blue.
  • Shampoo regularly, especially after haircuts.
  • Call your doctor if you have a weakened immune system or if your skin doesn’t improve after a month of self-care.

 

 

Beneficial Herbs

Herb

Form

Benefits

Pau d’ arco

Tincture

Anti-fungal

Tea tree oil

Oil. Do a compress

A strong anti-fungal

Tolu balsam

Resin. Apply to the affected area            

Antibacterial and antiseptic.

Walnut leaf

Tincture. Do a compress

Stops oozing and exudation

Wild oregano               

Oil

Antifungal. Destroys resistant forms of fungi.