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What Does Ringworm Look Like

Updated on October 15, 2014

Ringworm Pictures

Ringworm of the skin
Ringworm of the skin | Source
Ringworm of the scalp
Ringworm of the scalp | Source
Ringworm of the nails
Ringworm of the nails | Source

What Does Ringworm Really Look Like

Initially it is difficult to recognise what ringworm looks like. It does however look slightly different depending on which part of your body that you get the ringworm on. To help identify what ringworm actually looks like you first need to know that ringworm can appear on any part of your body.

This would include your scalp, your nails and anywhere else on the skin of your body. On the skin it looks like round red rings, on the nails like a yellow discolouring and on the scalp like crusted rings and brittle hair.

The red rings from where this gets its name is probably the easiest form of ringworm to identify. The nails is also easy enough to identify though the yellow colour may often look like a dark brown colour as well. That depends on the nail type of the person but the one thing that both will have in common is the very brittle nature of the actual nails.

Some people also appear to look a great deal worse than others. By this I mean that some people may get a series of red rings on parts of their body, whereas, others may also get these rings but then they join together to make it look like a large rash. That can also look very blotchy and have the appearance of a large red rash.

Start of ringworm In the Scalp

Beginning of Ringworm In The Scalp
Beginning of Ringworm In The Scalp

Identify Quickly What Ringworm Looks Like

There are certain diseases that look like ringworm and many people confuse the way for example that eczema looks like ringworm. Scabies is another one that is frequently mixed up with ringworm and they are two different problems with two different solutions. They have a similar red rash look to them but they are not the same things. In fact there are many things that can look like ringworm so it is better to have a clear understanding of what ringworm actually looks like. Let's get the simple ones out of the way first.

Ringworm of the Nails

You can get this on the nails of your hands or feet, and when this part of the body is affected the signs are very easy to pick up. The nails start to discolour and they may go a yellow color or in some cases a brownish color but either way there will be severe discoloring. They also develop a chalk like appearance and the actual nail itself starts to become very brittle and will break off very easily. If left untreated the nail will eventually get into such a state that it will simply fall off. Ringworm of the feet is usually referred to as Athlete's foot which people would be much more aware of. This is very common with sport's people.

Ringworm of the Scalp.

Itchiness is probably the first clue that you may have ringworm of the scalp. You will start to feel itchy under the skin and will then find that the source of this is a a small pimple on the scalp. This will grow and develop into a red ring. This is difficult to spot as the ring is covered by your natural hair. More of these will eventually start to develop and the itch becomes close to intolerable. This ringworm virus then attacks the hair roots which will cause the hair to fall out. It isn't a pretty thing to look at and many people get extremely embarrassed about having it. Treating it is also very difficult and it is very hard to get rid of. Anywhere were large groups of people appear is a great source for this contagious disease and you will find ringworm of the scalp quite common in places like boarding schools, armies or anywhere that large groups of people meet and stay together.

Ringworm of the skin, face and body

Ringworm is a fungus and has nothing to do with any type of worm. The ring element of the name is however what describes the look as you can see from the picture on this hub. Again this skin ringworm starts with a small spot. This spot then goes an opaque color in the centre and then a bright red ring starts to form which gives this fungus its name. It is also a fungus that can spread very quickly all over the body and needs to be treated very quickly as soon as you see it. These red rings appear quickly and in many cases can overlap and become a great irritant to the skin. A particular one found in men is known as jock itch and this is incredibly itchy and embarrassing to have.

People do confuse this with scabies and although it is also itchy, looks like a red rash there are no distinct rings and this is the best way to spot the differences. Always look out for those telltale rings and you will be certain that you have ringworm. Then you need to get it treated quickly by creams, powders and sprays as appropriate.

An Example of Ringworm On The Skin

Understanding the Ringworm Rash

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