How do you get ringworms? Get insights on the definition, causes and symptoms in human being. You will also learn about their appearance from the various pictures that are provided.
What Is Ringworm – Definition
Ringworm is medically known as tinea corporis, it is a fungal infection that affects the top layer of your skin. It normally develops a red circular rash that has a clearer skin in the middle.
They are referred to as ringworm from their appearance. They may cause an itchy sensation on the skin or not. They are not actually caused by a parasite or worm as it was previously thought.
Males and children below the age of nine years are commonly affected by ringworms than females. The word ringworm is used to refer to several types of fungal infection. Therefore there are various types of ringworm as described below:
Body ringworm: The body ringworms are sometimes classified as true ringworm. It can affects any part of your skin except the scalp, feet and the facial area that grows beards. They are characterized by a circular rash that may be dry and scaly or moist and crusty.
Scalp ringworm: Also known as tinea capitis, it is common in children and normally affects the scalp. It may form black scaly swollen blisters on the affected areas. The blisters may become filled with pus and forms crusting that may cause bald patches on the head. Severe scalp ringworm may cause scarring and permanent bald patches if not controlled on time.
Groin ringworm: Normally causes red sores on the groin area. The infection may spread to the inner thighs, external genital and to the buttocks.
Ringworm of the nail: It’s also known as tinea unguium, it usually starts to develop on the tips of the toenails. It may cause the toenails to become thick and discolored. The fingernails infection is less common.
How Do You Get Ringworm – In Humans
Is ringworm contagious? You may have ever noticed a circular ring on your skin at a certain age in your life or you may be suffering from this condition now. This skin condition is a contagious fungal infection that can be contacted in various ways as described below:
- From one person to the other
Ringworm normally spread from one person to the other through direct skin contact with infected person. This condition is caused by mold-like parasites that may live on the cells of your outer skin layer. The spread of this infection is high in congested areas that encourages skin contact. This is the major reason to what causes ringworm in children under the age of 9 years who are schooling.
- From animals to human being
You may also get ringworms by touching an animal that is infected with this condition. Various animal and pets that you keep at home may spread ringworms to human being during grooming. Ringworm is common in animals such as cats, dogs and even cows. You need to be very careful while handling such animals especially when they are infected with this condition.
- From various objects to human
Sharing of various objects such as towels, brushes, combs, blades, beddings and linen with an infected person may spread the infection to you. Coming into contact with other objects that are touched or rubbed against infected animals and person may also spread ringworms to un-infected individual.
- From the soil to human being
How do you get ringworm from the soil? Although it is rare but ringworm may also spread to you through direct contact with a highly infected soil. Prolonged contact with such soil may encourage the spread of ringworms.
Adults may also become carrier of ringworm especially the scalp infection without developing any symptom. As you grow you may develop a resistance to such infection. Ringworm carrier person may spread the infection to young children without even knowing. Infected kids will therefore develop the symptoms since their immune system is still developing. Other risk factors that aids in what causes ringworms in human includes the following:
- A very young and old age. Ringworm is common in younger children who are below 9 years and in older ages.
- Certain medical treatments that weaken your immune system such as steroids tablets and chemotherapy also increases the risk of ringworms.
- You are also likely to develop a fungal infection if you are having medical condition that weaken your immune system such as HIV and Aids.
- Poor blood circulation also known as venous insufficiency increases the chances of developing ringworm infection.
- You may also develop ringworm if you have a history of infection in the past.
- Other medical condition such as type 1 diabetes increases the chances of this condition.
- Overweight or obese is also associated with fungal infections.
- African-Caribbean are also at risk of developing scalp infection.
- Artery disorders such as atherosclerosis may also contribute to getting this infection.
The above factors contributes largely on how do you get ringworm. It is advisable to visit your doctor regularly for blood test to check your body immune system and for treatment of other medical condition that may increase the chances of fungal infection.
What Causes Ringworm
Ringworm is an infection that is caused by a fungus. Ringworm is a contagious infection, when you become in contact with the fungi that causes ringworm, they may live and spread on your outer skin layer.
This infection is not caused by a worm as it was previously thought.
The fungi are found everywhere especially in warm and moist areas such as wash-room, swimming pool and in skin folds on your body.
You can get infected if you walk in dumpy areas, sharing of contaminated towels, clothing, sporting equipment’s and direct body contact with infected person or animal.
The various types of ringworms are also caused by different types of fungi. Many individuals are commonly affected by ringworm of the skin that is caused by fungus trichophyton rubrum. This type of fungus is spread from one person to the other. Ringworm of the skin is also caused by fungus microsporum canis that is spread from dogs and cats to human being.
When one part of your body is infected, you are likely to spread the infection to other parts of your body. For example, when you are infected with athlete’s foot fungus, it is likely to spread the groin area to cause jock itch ringworm. It may also spread to the hands to cause tinea manuum.
You may wonder how do you get ringworm. Some people are prone to fungal infection than other. Various factors such the stability of your immune system among others determines the possibility of contacting this skin infection. You are also likely to get ringworms if your family has a history of this infection.
Symptoms of Ringworm – Signs
Several days after a fungal infection, you will notice various symptoms of ringworm on different parts of your body such as hands, face, foot, head, and groin areas among other parts. They include the following:
- Itchy, scaly and inflamed skin
- Red circular patches that are redder around the outside with a skin that appears to be normal at the center
- Red patches on the affected areas that has sharply-defined edges
The symptoms may be worse in more severe cases. You may experience:
- Multiple rings that may grow and merge together
- Occurrence of pus filled blisters or sores may develop around the ring
- Patches or ring that is raised slightly above the skin level with inflamed skin inside the ring
The ring may spread to cover a larger area. You may also experience several patches on the same area that may blister to ooze.
During this stage, you are likely to spread this infection, but how do you get ringworm? Direct body contact with infected person or infected surfaces may transmit ringworm to un-infected individual.
Ringworm on the face and neck may not appear to be ring- shaped always. You may only notice a swollen, itchy and raised patches that may be scaly or crusted. When the beard area is affected, it may cause some patches of hair breaking.
When the scalp is infected, you may experience several symptoms of ringworm on scalp such as small and itchy patches on the scalp and a patchy hair loss. Severe infection may cause small pus filled blisters on the scalp, bald patches that may be permanent and crusting on the scalp.
Athlete’s foot main symptoms includes, itchy, red, dry and rash that normally develops in the spaces between the toes. A severe condition may cause cracks on the affected areas, swelling, blisters and scaling around your sole.
When you start to experience the above symptoms, it is better to find the various treatments on how to get rid of ringworms before the condition becomes severe. You may be required to visit your doctor for diagnosis and treatment.
Ringworm Pictures – What Does It Look Like
There are various pictures that shows how do you get ringworm and they look like. From the pictures you are able to see the various parts of your body that may get infected such as the scalp, face, neck, arms, fingers and toes, groin areas and foot.
From the pictures, you are able to notice the various symptoms such as a circular shape, blistering and slightly raised skin above the normal level. The pictures are also showing that the affected areas may be reddish in color. When you pay a close look on the pictures, you will be able to see that the skin inside the circle appears to be healthy.
More sources and references:
- https:// www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/ringworm/basics/definition/con-20021104
- https:// www.healthofchildren.com/R/Ringworm.html
- https:// www.nhs.uk/Conditions/Ringworm/Pages/Causes.aspx
- https:// www.webmd.com/skin-problems-and-treatments/tc/ringworm-of-the-skin-cause
- https:// www.nhs.uk/Conditions/Ringworm/Pages/Symptoms.aspx