One of the characteristic signs and symptoms of ringworm is itching. So if a red raised rash doesn’t itch, does it mean that the infection is not ringworm? Not really. Although ringworm is known for causing the skin to itch due to inflammation, not everyone experiences this particular symptom.
Whether or not it does depends on a couple of factors including where the ringworm infection develops. Ringworm that infects the toenails and fingernails does not cause itching, for instance. However, the nails do discolor and lift from the nail bed which may cause some discomfort in sensitive people.
Some infections are too mild to cause itching and some people just don’t have that reaction when they get the skin condition. This can make it difficult to self-diagnose the infection. If you have any question about a suspicious rash, having it examined by a medical professional is the best course of action. This ensures you get the right cure for the problem.
What Causes Ringworm?
Despite the name, ringworm is caused by a fungus. This fungus, called dermatophytes, lives on the skin. They are usually prevented from causing a problem by the presence of other beneficial bacteria and fungi that also live on the skin. However, if the right conditions present themselves, ringworm fungus will grow and multiply, causing an infection.
It is a highly contagious disease and can be acquired in one of several ways:
- Contact with an infectious person: Ringworm is contagious for as long as the lesions are active on the body. Touching someone with this condition can cause you to get it. In fact, it is often transmitted sexually via touching a person with jock itch.
- Contact with a contaminated object: Another common way for people to get ringworm is through the sharing of clothing, shoes, and other personal items. Ringworm can live on inanimate objects primarily because they actually feed on and occupy dead skin cells. Handling contaminated objects transfers those cells to the body of an unsuspecting person.
- Contact with contaminated surfaces: The fungus grows in warm moist areas like the corners of showers and pool areas. You can get this disease by touching these areas with your bare hands or feet.
- Contact with pets: Animal-to-human transfer is also possible with cats being the most common transmitters. It is important to have pets checked regularly for ringworm and to treat ring worm in pets as soon as possible to prevent human infection.
- Contact with infected parts of your body: Sometimes people are their own worst enemy and it is particularly true in cases of ringworm. If you have an infection in one part of your body, you are more likely to spread it to other parts due to poor hygiene.
Is ringworm always itchy? No. There are many cases where ringworm is not itchy, so you have to take the whole of your symptoms into consideration when self-diagnosing. If you are still uncertain, it is best to get examined by a medical professional. Once you have a confirmed diagnosis, it is time to turn your attention to curing the infection.
Depending on the severity of the infection, the doctor may prescribe an oral medication or topical antifungal cream for ringworm to treat it. However, these products can take a long time to work, so if you are trying to clear up facial ringworm in time to take family pictures or some other important event, you may want to look into other remedies. There are several excellent over the counter ringworm treatment remedies that will help you achieve clear skin in a matter of days like Phytozine. To learn more about these top ringworm remedies and to see before and after photos of people who have successfully treated their skin disease, go to the homepage.