Contrary to its name, ringworm is not caused by a worm. It is a very common fungal infection caused by a contagious fungus Tinea. Anyone can get ringworm infection, although some people like children are more vulnerable than others.
READ ALSO: Infectious Diseases
Symptoms of ringworm include a red, scaly, circular patch on the skin or nails. It usually affects the scalp and arms, but it can appear on any part of the body. There are many medications are available to treat this fungal infection, natural treatments can also be effective.
9 home remedies for ringworm
- Apple cider vinegar
Apple cider vinegar contains antifungal properties that is effective against Candida. To treat ringworm with apple cider vinegar, soak a cotton wool pad in the undiluted vinegar and wipe it on surface of the affected area. Repeat up to 3 times daily for best results.
- Coconut oil
Coconut oil contains some fatty acids that may destroy fungal cells by damaging their cell membranes. Research suggests that coconut oil may be an effective remedy for people with mild to moderate skin infections. Use it to treat ringworm by applying liquid coconut oil to the skin thrice daily.
Garlic has been used for a very long time to treat infections. There are yet no studies that observe the effects of garlic on ringworm, but it has been effective for other types of fungi, including Candida, Torulopsis, Trichophyton, and Cryptococcus.
Garlic can be used for treating ringworm by making a paste of crushed garlic cloves. Blend the garlic with some olive oil or coconut oil. Apply a thin layer of paste to the affected skin and cover with gauze. Leave for up to 2 hours before rinsing. Repeat twice daily until symptoms disappears.
- Aloe vera
Aloe vera contains antifungal, antibacterial, and antiviral properties. Apply the gel from an aloe vera plant onto the ringworm patch three times daily. The gel also has cooling properties, so it may soothe itchy and swollen skin.
Turmeric known as curcumin is believed to be responsible for the health of the spice. It contains anti-inflammatory and antimicrobial properties. You can drink turmeric as a tea or add it to meals. For topical applications, mix it with a small amount of water or coconut oil until it forms a paste and apply this to the skin. Leave it to dry before wiping off.
- Tea tree oil
Tea tree oil has been used for many bacterial and fungal skin conditions for a long time now. Tea tree oil is effective in treating ringworm. Make a 2 percent dilution of tea tree oil by mixing 12 drops of the essential oil with 1 ounce of a cold-pressed carrier oil, such as coconut oil. Apply this to the skin three times daily.
- Lemongrass oil
Lemongrass essential oil is known to ease the activity of several types of fungus. Lemongrass oil can be used for ringworm by mixing it with a carrier oil, and applying it to the skin twice daily with a cotton ball.
- Grapefruit seed extract
Grapefruit seed extract may treat fungal infections by mixing 1 drop of grapefruit seed extract with a tablespoon of water and applying to the skin twice daily. Turmeric may stain lighter skin a yellow color, but this will fade within a few days.
- Oil of oregano
Oil of oregano contains two strong antifungals called thymol and carvacrol. According to research, oil of oregano can stop the growth of the fungus Candida albicans. Dilute oil of oregano with a carrier oil before use. Apply the oil to the affected area up to three times daily.
When to see a doctor
Consult your doctor or a dermatologist if symptoms persists within 2 weeks of using home remedies. A doctor may recommend using an over-the-counter topical lotion that contains clotrimazole or terbinafine. These products must be applied twice daily. In some cases, the doctor may prescribe stronger antifungal medications.
Ringworm is highly contagious, so it is essential to be thorough about preventative techniques.
- avoid walking barefoot in communal showers or changing areas
- change socks and underwear daily
- take infected pets to a veterinarian for immediate treatment
- wash sports gear regularly
- keep skin clean and dry
- wear open-toed or loose shoes whenever possible to allow air to circulate around the feet
- avoid sharing clothing, towels, or bed linen
- wash hands with soap and water regularly, especially after contact with animals, which can be carriers of ringworm
- take a shower immediately after games or practice sessions.
Disclaimer: The content provided on healthdiary365.com is purely informative and educational in nature and should not be interpreted as medical advice. Please use the content only in consultation with an appropriate certified medical doctor or healthcare professional.