Ringworm is a fungal infection of the skin that commonly occurs on the head, body or feet. It is highly contagious. It may be passed from cats, dogs or humans to other people. There are specific things you can do to prevent ringworm.
- Avoid touching or handling infected animals.
- Avoid wearing someone else’s clothes.
- Wear sandals in showers where others shower.
- Wear shoes that let air get to the feet.
- Dry carefully between toes after bathing.
- Wear clean white cotton socks daily.
Scalp: See below
If your child has ringworm:
- Use medicine as directed.
- Call your child’s doctor for an appointment if the infection doesn’t improve within two weeks.
If you have questions call your child’s doctor.
Ringworm of the Scalp (Tinea Capitis) & How to recognize ringworm of the scalp:
- Frequent scratching of the head.
- Scalp flaking that looks like dandruff.
- Small scaly patches over the scalp.
- Areas of hair loss or thinning hair.
- Small black dots on the scalp where hairs have been broken off.
- Red pimple-like bumps or pus-filled bumps.
Things to do to reduce the spread of ringworm of the scalp:
- Wash hands frequently.
- DO NOT share hats, combs, brushes, barrettes, hair ribbons or pillows.
- Wash combs and brushes frequently in hot soapy water.
- Avoid tight braids.
Treatment for ringworm of the scalp:
An oral medication to be given daily for several weeks will be prescribed. This medication should be given as directed until it is all gone. The fungal infection may not completely go away if all the medication is not completely taken.
Selenium sulfide (Sebulex®, Selsum Blue® or Gold®) or Nizoral® shampoo
is often recommended to be used 2-3 times per week to help the fungus go away. Your entire family should use this shampoo 2-3 times each week until the fungal infection has ended.
- The school nurse should be told that your child has ringworm of the scalp. She will need to check your child’s classmates for the same problem. Your child may return to school as soon as the treatment begins.
- Be sure to keep all follow-up appointments. Your child will need to be checked that the fungal infection is clearing. Additional medication may be needed to complete your child’s treatment. Another fungal culture may be obtained.
- Other instructions: