Is Ringworm Serious?

Has a strange, circular, ringed rash recently popped up on your body? If so, you’ve probably caught ringworm.

While ringworm isn’t comfortable and it’s highly contagious, it isn’t a serious infection. Learn more from our AFC Urgent Care South Charlotte team below!

What Is Ringworm?

Ringworm, also known as dermatophytosis, is a fungal infection of the skin. Instead of it being caused by a worm, it’s caused by a fungus that resembles a worm in the shape of a ring—hence the name

Ringworm is usually used to describe tinea corporis (ringworm of the body), although it can sometimes be used to describe tinea infection in other locations, such as tinea cruris (ringworm of the groin). We’ve listed the most common symptoms of ringworm below.

Common Signs and Symptoms of Ringworm

  • A scaly ring-shaped area, typically on the buttocks, trunk, arms and legs
  • Itchiness
  • A clear or scaly area inside the ring, perhaps with a scattering of bumps whose color ranges from red, brown to gray
  • Slightly raised, expanding rings
  • A round, flat patch of itchy skin
  • Overlapping rings

How Serious Is Ringworm?

Ringworm isn’t serious, and it’s highly treatable. It’s most often treated with OTC anti-fungal topical medications.

Below, we’ve listed some other effective ways to treat this fungal infection at home.

More Ways to Get Rid of Ringworm

  • Let it breathe. Bandaging the rash locks in moisture and slows the healing process. Instead, wear comfortable, breathable clothes to speed healing and avoid spreading the rash to other people.
  • Wash bedding daily. Because ringworm is highly contagious, you should wash your sheets daily to get rid of the infection faster. Fungal spores can transfer to your sheets and comforter, which could then spread to other parts of your body and cause the rash to take longer to heal.
  • Change wet underwear and socks. If ringworm develops on your feet or groin area, keep these areas dry. If you sweat a lot during the day, bathe with an anti-fungal cleansing bar and then reapply your anti-fungal powder or lotion.

Need non-emergency medical care? Stop by our AFC Urgent Care South Charlotte center today!