ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel

Nasty Infectious Diseases You Want To Avoid - Ringworm

Updated on December 31, 2008

This is a skin infection caused by a fungus that can affect the scalp, skin, fingers, toenails, or feet. The disease has nothing to do with worms or rings. Scalp ringworm is the most common fungal skin infection in children. While anyone can get ringworm, children are more susceptible to certain varieties.

Patients are infectious for as long as the lesions appear on the body; if untreated, the condition may last for years.

Cause - Ringworm is spread by direct skin-to-skin contact with infected people or pets, or with indirect contact with items such as barber clippers, shower stalls, or floors. Children can get it from playing with ringworm-infected dogs or cats or from sharing combs, brushes, headphones, towels, pillows, hats, and sofas.

Symptoms - The infection usually begins as a small pimple that gets larger and larger, leaving scaly patches of temporary baldness; infected hair is brittle and breaks off easily. Sometimes there is a yellow cuplike crusty area. The infection usually is seen 10 to 14 days after contact. Ringworm of the scalp (Tinea capitis) involves scaly, temporary bald patches with dandruff-like white scales. The hair may be dull, and the infection may affect only one part of the scalp or may spread over the entire head. A severe case may include fever and swollen glands below the hairline. Ringworm of the nails causes thick, discolored, and brittle or chalky and friable nails. Ringworm of the body (Tinea corporis) is flat and ring-shaped; the edge is red and may be dry and scaly, or moist and crusted. The center area clears and appears normal. Symptoms occur 4 to 10 days after contact. The rings can appear on face, legs, arms, or trunk. Ringworm of the foot appears as a scaling or cracking of the skin, especially between the toes. Since so many species of fungus can cause ringworm, infection with one species won't make a person immune to future infections from other species.

Diagnosis - Microscopic inspection of infected hair or skin scrapings will reveal certain characteristics of the fungus. The doctor may use an ultraviolet light called a Wood's light to diagnose ringworm; when the lamp is shone on an affected area, the fungus may show as a yellowish or brilliant green fluorescence, depending on the type of fungus. (The most common type of scalp fungus will not have this effect.)

Treatment - Antifungal medication (such as griseofulvin) by mouth or applied to the skin. An antifungal ointment applied directly to the scalp will stop the ringworm from spreading to other areas of the head, and to a child's friends. Any secondary bacterial infection will be treated with antibiotics. Boggy raised areas of the scalp (keratons) will require a special cream and a cotton cap to cover the scalp until the areas dry. The infected hair will need to be clipped and a special shampoo used. Body ringworm is easier to treat; a variety of antifungal creams will work. The patient should wash well with soap and water and remove all scabs and crusts. Antifungal cream should then be rubbed into all lesions.

Prevention - People should not share towels, hats, or clothing of an infected person. Good grooming and hygiene and frequent checks of a child's scalp can prevent the disease. Once an infection has been diagnosed, all contaminated articles must be cleaned to prevent further infection. Combs, brushes, hats, scarves, and bedding must be cleaned in hot, soapy water.

Comments

    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment

    • profile image

      Onuoha 

      5 years ago

      MILTON H:A fungus is a livnig plant, has nothing to do with your Genes. There are thousands of different Fungi, from Mushrooms on down. You happen to have the type that feeds off of your toenails.

    • profile image

      Goran 

      5 years ago

      I usually do not write a lot of renoessps,however i did a few searching and wound up here What are Backlinks and how you should use it while maintaining your website.And I do have 2 questions for you if it's allright. Is it just me or does it look like some of these comments come across as if they are coming from brain dead individuals? And, if you are posting on additional online sites, I'd like to follow anything fresh you have to post.Would you list of the complete urls of your communal pageslike your twitter feed, Facebook page or linkedin profile?

    working

    This website uses cookies

    As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, hubpages.com uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

    For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at: https://hubpages.com/privacy-policy#gdpr

    Show Details
    Necessary
    HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
    LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
    Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
    AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
    Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
    CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the googleapis.com or gstatic.com domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
    Features
    Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
    Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
    Marketing
    Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
    Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
    Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
    Statistics
    Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
    ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)