What is Ringworm?
Finding a patch of scaly, red skin with ringworm can be the cause of embarrassment and social anxiety (especially when you are an athlete sharing shower rooms with other people). Ringworm is a contagious fungal infection caused by mold that can embed itself in the skin, hair, and nails. Wherever it appears on the body, it typically creates a ring-shaped rash. When the fungal infection sets in, the result is a red or white mark on the skin, causing itchiness, irritation, and even hair loss if damage to the follicle is significant enough. Simply passed by contact, ringworm is a fungus that can live on humans, on animals, and on the surface of objects. At Advanced Dermatology, our team diagnoses and treats fungal infections orally or topically based on your diagnosis with medical-grade products. Schedule an appointment today in Katy, League City, Pearland, or Sugar Land, TX for ringworm relief.
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What Causes Ringworm?
As a fungal infection, ringworm thrives in warm and moist areas, like locker room surfaces or a swimming pool. An object that has been infected with ringworm (including towels, clothing, phones, and sports equipment) can also spread the fungus to you. If you play sports, you are at a higher risk for ringworm since sweat on the body and clothing makes welcoming environments for the ringworm fungi.
What Are the Symptoms of Ringworm?
You may feel the itchy, burning, or stinging sensations of ringworm before you see it. The most common symptom of ringworm is a raised, ring-shaped rash that appears on the infected area of skin. If the infection is on the scalp or in the facial hair, the follicles may become infected. This, unfortunately, can cause patches of hair to fall out. If the rash develops on the feet (athlete's foot) or groin area (jock itch), you may notice blisters, an odor, and/or a change in skin color. Left untreated, ringworm will easily spread, and symptoms may become painful. Without proper medication, you also risk scarring your skin.
How is Ringworm Treated?
After we have diagnosed your ringworm, we will review your treatment options. In most cases, an antifungal cream, powder, or spray will be prescribed that should be applied as directed. Mild cases of ringworm should clear up in about two weeks with proper care. A ringworm infection on the scalp may require a prescription for an antifungal oral medication and a medical-grade antifungal shampoo. We will talk to you about what to expect during your treatment and ways to prevent ringworm from reoccurring.
When You Need Skin Care
If you have a ring-shaped rash or other symptoms of ringworm, plan a consultation with our team to get a diagnosis and treatment. Ringworm is extremely contagious and becomes painful if left untreated so getting appropriate care is vital. During your appointment at Advanced Dermatology in Katy, League City, Pearland, or Sugar Land, TX, we will help you understand how to treat ringworm and give you a strategy to prevent future infections.