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Topical Treatments For Ringworm

Updated on April 21, 2010

Ringworm should not be confused with eczema or psoriasis. Ringworm, despite the name, has nothing to do with worms. Ringworm is a skin condition that forms as a raised ring or circle.

Depending on the severity, the outer "ring" can be red, or even scab. In order to treat ringworm, it is important to properly diagnose it. Often times, ringworm can be mistaken for eczema and psoriasis.

Having had severe ringworm in the past, I've had my condition misdiagnosed by doctors on numerous occasions. Mistaken for eczema and psoriasis, this has lead to wasted time spent taking oatmeal baths and creams that didn't help. During the years, I properly diagnosed my skin condition through my own research.

Ringworm, Eczema, Psoriasis? What's the Difference?

Eczema is a skin condition that is caused by an allergic reaction. Most of the time, eczema outbreaks are caused by harsh detergents and soaps. It is usually found on the hands and neck and appear as red, swelling patches. The rashes can crack, blister, or bleed depending on severity.

Psoriasis is a skin condition that is similar to eczema. The causes are not fully understood but there are strong research suggesting that genetics may be a factor. Psoriasis is a lifelong condition and is associated with Psoriatic arthritis. People suffering from psoriasis may show signs of plaque or flakes in the rash. Psoriasis is not contagious.

Ringworm is a fungal skin condition that is contagious. Ringworm can be very itchy. Ringworm can appear as a light reddish, raised rash in the beginning and then develop into the classic ring later on. The ring can be light red when the rash is mild and scab when it becomes severe. Unlike eczema and psoriasis, ringworm can be cured.

mild outbreak of ringworm
mild outbreak of ringworm

How to Cure Ringworm

Topical treatment. Curing ringworm is fairly easy. You can go to any drugstore and purchase an anti-fungal cream such as Lamisil or Desenex and apply it directly to your rash. I've found that other healing ointments works as well. Aquaphor has been working for me. If you use an anti-fungal cream and your ringworm has not lessen, consider that you may not have ringworm and have your condition properly diagnosed.

Simply applying these creams sometimes is not enough. Like any fungal infection, you must take extra care to completely rid yourself of it.


  1. Keep the rash dry before you apply the topical cream. Fungus thrive is moist, wet conditions.
  2. Get some sun. It is important to expose your skin to some sun. In the case of ringworm, like any fungus, it grows best in dark, damp conditions so shed some light on your problem.
  3. Don't stop your treatment. In the best case scenario, your rash will disappear within as little as 1 week of usage. It is important to keep applying the cream or ointment for another week or even 2. The spores can survive for a very long time. Continuing your treatment is a precaution for recurring breakouts.
  4. Practice good hygiene. Wash your hands, shower, bathe. It may sound childish to repeat these elementary rules but you wouldn't believe how many people do not regularly wash their hands especially after using the bathroom. Think of moments where you could take a minute to wash your hands but didn't. There is always room for improvement.

more severe outbreak of ringworm. Notice the scabbing.
more severe outbreak of ringworm. Notice the scabbing.


Having suffered from severe to mild ringworm, there is something I noticed. Sometimes, I break out in what seems to be a seasonal cycle. I can literally "feel" the itch before it appears in rash form. In this case, activity such as exercise seem to lessen and even prevent the breakout on occasion.

My only guess is that testosterone buildup from the exercise help suppress ringworm from breaking out. I have no proof but this is from my personal experience.


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    • Set's All Set profile imageAUTHOR

      Set's All Set 

      6 years ago from New England

      George, I am not a doctor so please consider taking medical advice from a professional. Having put that disclaimer out of the way, here's what I think.

      I exhibit some of the symptoms you've mentioned. I have felt chronic weakness which I blame on my very physically demanding job. I used to have so much energy until I started working this profession. My energy level wouldn't return even after a long weekend or rest.

      I've also noticed I get ringworm rashes and outbreaks in the winter. I attribute both of these symptoms due to the lack of sunlight and UV exposure. If you read other sources, you will learn that sunlight can help combat depression and ringworm. I am very unacceptable to fungal conditions(ringworm, dandruff) but these usually only occur in the winter time.

      As far as sex, ask every working man/field professional on the down low and he will say the same thing. Overworking yourself can have a serious detriment to your sex life whether you are 20 or 40. Again, I am more sexually active in the summer for some reason. If it was in my power, I would move to a warmer climate or just take a vacation to better weather. Horny goat weed and yohimbe bark extract are natural supplements that can help you in the bedroom but be sure to tackle the real problem at the source. I would work on high/explosive interval training rather than lifting/cardio.

      The best thing that has helped for me with energy is eating regularly and taking my multivitamins. It's winter here so going out for some sun is out of the question but if it's possible for you, get some rays.

      As far as your social anxiety, that may be a more complicated question to answer but from what I know, I tend to practice productive self-talk in order to curb my stress or the stress that I used to have. If I am feeling anxious, I would ask myself, "Why are you anxious?" Then I would actually have a mental conversation with myself and that has helped my a lot.

      Love yourself. If you don't love yourself, you can't expect other people to. Furthermore, learn to trust yourself. Find your limit. Cockiness is thinking you are above your potential and confidence is knowing your potential. It seems to me that you don't have an intimate understanding of your potential. Don't be afraid to measure it with other people. Compete in a foot race, video games, whatever. Competition also boosts testosterone.

    • profile image


      6 years ago

      Hi there, just discovered this forum. Recently been really looking for advice online for an extremely long time now, still have a few problems related to testosterone levels. I'll start with some history.

      I'm suffering just like an old fogey, but still in my thirty-something years.

      I keep an eye on the things I actually eat and make certain to exercise two to three times weekly. I generally do strength training, but toss in a tiny bit cardio as well. I tend not to go out to party, nor have I tried illegal drugs.

      However, for so much of my adult life, I've experienced these types of problems:

      Acute weakness, often worn-out. I rarely have quite enough energy. No matter if I sleep LOADS.

      My mind is "foggy." I've got a difficult time focusing around the projects I need to carry out. I've difficulty choosing the right phrase, even though I am pretty intelligent.

      It's really frustrating mainly because I am aware I've great potential, the desire is simply poor. I frequently am slightly depressed/blue.

      I commonly experience a pretty consistent stress and anxiety (especially in groups) for zero real reason. It is completely crippling not to have the ability to feel comfy in friendly scenarios.

      Sex seriously isn't even a idea in my mind. Additionally around cute women it is difficult for me to be interested. There have even been some times I couldn't keep an erection in the bedroom. It feels so terrible.

      What is a smart solution?

      I got tested at a lab for having low T, came out 365 ng/dl, but my physician will not likely give me test.

    • profile image


      7 years ago

      You can still get ringworm if you practice good hygiene. It's very contagious. I actually got ringworm from my cows that have ringworm.

    • Set's All Set profile imageAUTHOR

      Set's All Set 

      7 years ago from New England

      You can still get ringworm even if you have good hygene. I've notice that I am very sensitive to fungal infections like ringworm, and dandruff. The best way for me was to change my lifestyle. I get lots of sun because UV light helps kill fungus and I keep my skin/hair dry by not wearing a hat and changing my clothes often. Especially when I sweat.

      If you've ever had athlete's foot, then you know you get it because of sweaty sneakers and fungus thrive off dark, damp places.

    • profile image


      7 years ago

      I have never had this, im always aware of clean hygene... washing my hands frequently etc... what is the cause of this I mean how can you catch this?


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