How to Treat Ringworm in Children


Ringworm is not in fact a worm at all, but a fungal infection, identified by circular scaly patches of red skin, which spread outwards and have a pronounced edge. It can appear any­where on the body – the head, arms, nails, genital area or, as in the case of athlete’s foot, on the feet. If it appears on the scalp there may be some hair loss. It is passed on from an animal or another human.

What you can do

You should seek confirmation that the condition is indeed ringworm. If on the body, let air get to the affected parts as much as possible. Discard any brushes or combs if the scalp is affected and keep the child’s towels and flannels separate, to prevent spreading. Your child may be embarrassed by the bald patches and will need reassurance that the hair will soon grow back, but in the meantime they may want to wear a hat. Take any pets to the vet to see whether they are the source of the infection.

Treatment

Aromatherapy

Tea-Tree oil, known for its anti-fungal prop­erties, has been effective in treatment of ringworm. One drop applied to the area three times a day can prove beneficial. A practitioner may also recommend using Thyme which can help boost the immune system against further infection.

Herbal medicine

A medical herbalist would look not only at the ringworm itself, but also at the child’s general health, as, if the ringworm is widespread, it may be a sign of the immune system not being as strong as it should be. To help boost the system and treat the skin, a tea containing Echinacea, Cleavers, Wild Indigo and Yellow Dock may be suggested. Antifungal creams or lotions applied externally, such as Calendula, Marigold or Myrrh, are also helpful.

Naturopathy

A naturopath would recommend keeping the skin as dry as possible. Clothes shouldn’t be swopped with siblings as this can pass the infection on. Pets shouldn’t be treated, too. Tea-Tree oil may be applied to the area. The immune system will need a boost to help fight off infection, so an increase in vitamins A, C, E and also zinc will be recommended. Mineral salt supplements may also be given, such as potassium sulphate and iron phosphate. To help detoxify the skin, drinking plenty of water will be advised and exercise encouraged.

Homoeopathy

A homoeopath will look at the child’s health and constitution and take into account how to boost the immune system to prevent further attack from infection. Sepia may also be recommended to help deal with the itchy skin.

Other therapies that may be beneficial: acupuncture.

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About the Author: Andrew Reinert is a health care professional who loves to share different tips on health and personal care. He is a regular contributor to MegaHowTo and lives in Canada.

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