Ringworm is an unpleasant skin condition that has no association with real worms. This condition occurs when certain types of fungi infect the skin causing scaly patches. These patches are normally circular in shape and resemble rings. Ringworm is a highly transmissible condition that can spread easily. It is not easy to avoid this condition, but it is possible to prevent it from spreading.
The first method of stopping ringworm from spreading is to stop sharing items. Sharing may be unsafe despite the claims of kindergarten teachers. It is advisable to stop sharing towels, clothes, blankets, pillows, combs, brushes (makeup and hair), and anything else that may come into contact with the skin. It is important to avoid sharing where there are reported cases of ringworm.
Clean your hair and skin
Cleaning your skin and hair is an important technique for preventing ringworm outbreaks. Frequent washing of the hair and skin helps in getting rid of the fungi that fall on the skin. Thorough drying after cleaning is also crucial.
It is vital to pay attention to warm and moist areas such as between the toes where ringworm is likely to occur. Keep these parts clean and dry.
Clean personal items
It is vital to clean personal items such as bed sheets, pillows, clothes, shoes, socks, brushes, and combs. They should be cleaned thoroughly on a daily basis. This prevention method is useful in places where there are cases of ringworm infection. It is equally important to dry personal items after cleaning and before using them.
Clean/Wash and dry shared places
The common shared places that should be cleaned and dried include floors, bathrooms, and counters among others. These places need thorough and regular cleaning and drying to prevent the condition from spreading. Clean these places with utmost care especially when persons who have used them contact the infection. Disinfecting shared places with anti-fungal detergents can help in preventing ringworm outbursts. In a school environment, it is crucial to disinfect books, toys, and other objects used by children. Do not forget to dry shared places after cleaning.
Do not touch infected areas
Do not touch infected people and animals because the fungus that causes ringworm can be passed between humans and humans, and between humans and animals. Wash hands and dry them in case of direct contact. Also, wash other body parts in case of direct interaction with infected people or animals. School-going children should stay at home to avoid spreading the fungus. It is also essential to restrict contact between infected persons to avoid spreading the infection.
Treat the infection
Prompt treatment can prevent the infection from spreading. It is possible to treat ringworm with ordinary retail drugs such as tolnaftate, miconazole, clotrimazole, and terbinafine. Seek for a prescription in case of severe infections.
The common prescription drugs include ciclopirox, oxiconazole, econazole, fluconazole, itraconazole, ketoconazole, and butenafine.
Contact a health professional if the symptoms persist after several days of treatment from home.
- Use flip-flops or sandals when at the gym to prevent any possible infections from fungus on floors.
- Wear wool and cotton clothes.
- Avoid synthetic fabrics because they prevent the skin from “breathing”.