Ringworm is a very common skin condition that affects mostly children, but can also affect people at any age. Ringworm gets its name from the ring shaped rash it forms on the affected area on your body. Ringworm can develop on various areas on your body such as your feet, hands, arms, legs, head, and groin area.
You can tell you have ringworm when you notice scaly, red, itchy, and/or inflamed patches on your skin. These ring shaped rashes that’ll develop will sometimes look normal inside the ring and as the fungus spreads from the center of the patch the outer edge will become more scaly, red and irritated.
The number one question people want to know when they realize the have ringworm is how did they get it. Well, how do you get ringworm in the first place? This is a great question because once you know how you end up catching this infection the better you’ll be able to take action and treat the infection and stop the symptoms.
How Do You Get Ringworm?
Ringworm is a contagious condition that is caused by a persistent fungus known as dermatophytosis or dermatophytes. Dermatophytes is a fungus that can survive for months on the skin of humans, pets like cats or dogs, and even animals like sheep.
Like most fungi out there dermatophytosis thrives in warm and moist environments and is attracted to a protein that makes up the outer layer of skin known as keratin.
Ringworm is Highly Contagious
Since ringworm is highly contagious people normally catch this fungal infection through direct contact of an infected person or pet. You can also get ringworm from soil, surfaces, or objects that has fungus due to an infected individual that has previously touched it. Objects that people usually contact the ringworm causing fungus from include:
One of the most common places people develop ringworm is in locker rooms or public restrooms. This is because places like locker rooms or public showers are moist areas where the ringworm can thrive and live for a very long time. If you are in a public shower, public restroom, or locker room you should always wear some kind of footwear to help you prevent catching this fungal infection.
Ringworm on Surfaces
If you feel like the surface in your home is infected with the ringworm causing fungus you need to disinfect it. You can use something bleach or borax to help stop the spread of ringworm and kill the fungus on the suspected surface.
Combine some warm water with the bleach and then clean off the surface with the mixture. You should wash any sheets, towels, or clothes that the infected person had used to avoid passing on the infection to anybody else. How long the ringworm remains contagious is entirely up to you since it is up to you to take the proper action to disinfect any object or surface that may have the fungus.
If you feel your pet is infected take it to the vet right away. You can tell your pet is infected with some kind of fungal infection when you notice bald patches in its fur or if you notice a lot of unusual shedding. Don’t share any personal products such as a brush, clothes, or comb with anybody.
People Who are More Vulnerable to Catching Ringworm
There are some people who are more vulnerable to catching this infection than other people. Most people with skin disorders like eczema are more likely to develop ringworm due to open wounds caused by the skin infection, which allows the fungus to enter the body. Small kids who haven’t reached puberty yet are more vulnerable to ringworm. Also, some people are more prone to catching ringworm due to their genetics.