What is a ringworm?

Written by
November 15, 2021

When you hear of “ringworm,” you may believe that there is an actual worm in your skin. However, this is actually not the case. Instead, this is just the name of a fungal infection that affects the skin and can be easily treated after a proper diagnosis. At Chevy Chase Dermatology, we see patients regularly who have concerns about ringworm or other common skin conditions that may affect them. 

What is a ringworm? 

Ringworm is actually just a fungal infection that can cause a rash that is very distinct. The rash is often covering a certain area of the skin and has a red, raised, and scaley border that looks like a worm wrapped around the rash. This condition can appear anywhere on the body, and when it does, it might have a different name. In fact, you’ve already had ringworm if you’ve ever been diagnosed with jock itch or athlete’s foot. When caught and treated, patients will be able to treat it and bring their skin back to health. 

What are treatment options for ringworm? 

Ringworm should be treated as soon as it is diagnosed as it can be contagious. Additionally, patients with ringworm often experience itching that can be incredibly intense and uncomfortable. For many individuals, treatment will consist of a prescription-strength cream that fights fungal infections. This cream should be used as directed to ensure full treatment. 

How do I prevent ringworm? 

Below are a few solutions for managing healthy skin and reducing the risk of ringworm: 

  •         Avoid walking barefoot in areas such as locker rooms and public showers
  •         Changes socks and underwear daily
  •         Keep the skin clean and dry
  •         Wear shoes that provide air circulation
  •         Keep nails short and clean
  •         Don’t share items such as towels and clothing with others
  •         Avoid contact with others who have ringworm or other fungal infections on the skin

Do I have ringworm? 

If you suspect ringworm or another type of infection or rash, it may be time to speak to a dermatologist. Dr. Margaret Summerville and her team at Chevy Chase Dermatology are here to provide patients with solutions for conditions that impact the hair, skin, and nails. If you are in need of treatment and live in the area of Chevy Chase, MD, we welcome you to book a consultation appointment with our team conveniently located at 5530 Wisconsin Avenue, Suite #830. The office can be reached by phone at (301) 656-SKIN.         


Category: Ringworm


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