Scalp ringworm which is known in the medical industry as ‘tinea capitis’ is a very common type of scalp infection. Ringworm of the scalp is a highly contagious infection that is mainly caused by the mold-like fungi called dermatophytes that attack the outer layer of skin on the scalp and the hair shaft. It needs to be properly treated otherwise it can lead to other hair problems. This fungus infection can be mostly seen amongst children.
Ringworm is contagious and can spread in many ways. In most cases, the disease is transferred to humans when they are in contact with animals such as cows, goats, pigs and horses. Scalp ringworm often spreads when your skin is exposed to an infected person. It can also spread when you come in contact with objects or surfaces touched by an infected person or animal. Such objects can be clothes, towels, hats, bed linens, combs or brushes.
Signs and symptoms:
- Reddening, crusting, and scaling of the scalp
- Intense inching on the scalp
- Some area of the scalp becomes tender and painful
- Hair around the infected area becomes brittle and fragile
- One or more round patches of scaly skin that slowly expand or enlarge
- Patches with small black dots where the hair has broken off
- Hair loss in patches on the scalp due to severe inflammation on the infected area
- Hair in the infected area may appear gray and dull
- Swollen blisters that are scaly and look like small black dots
Who can suffer from scalp ringworm?
- People whose lifestyle involves frequent contact with animals can suffer from this problem.
- Scalp ringworm is quite common amongst children in the age group of four to fourteen years old.
- At times adults and very small children can suffer from this kind of scalp problem.
- Scalp ringworm occurs more amongst people living in urban areas as compared to those living in rural areas.
- Poor hair care routine can also cause scalp ringworm.
- Living in warm, damp climates can also be the reason behind scalp ringworm.
- People with weakened immune systems can also suffer from scalp ringworm.
- People suffering from diabetes, AIDS, or cancer are also more prone to suffer from this kind of scalp problem.
If you are suffering from scalp ringworm, you can easily cure it. But if you just ignore it, then after some time it will cause problems. There are many simple and easy to follow home remedies to treat this kind of scalp problem.
Home remedies for ringworm of the scalp:
- Make a smooth paste from crushed cassia leaves and basil leaves and apply it on the infected area for some time before washing your hair. This home remedy for scalp ringworm offers good result in few days.
- Mix basil oil with some lemon juice and apply the solution on the affected area. Apply it three times a day for fifteen to twenty days to get rid of ringworm on scalp.
- As weak immune system can also be reason behind this problem, you need to eat a healthy, balanced diet. Try to include raw vegetable and fruit juices to get the required nutrients.
- Tea tree oil is an effective element that can reduce the proliferation of this infection to a great extent. Tea tree oil is a natural antiseptic having antimicrobial and antibacterial properties that reduce inflammation, redness and itchiness caused by the fungus.
- The antifungal properties present in lemongrass oil can be used in the infected area of the scalp to reduce irritation.
- Another home remedy to fight this scalp problem is a mixture of fresh raw garlic juice, sea salt, lavender oil, and thyme oil and tea tree essential oils. This mixture can effectively fight scalp ringworm when applied directly to the infected areas for two weeks.
- To get relief from itchiness, you can apply coconut oil, lavender oil and castor oil regularly on the scalp. These hair oils will also facilitate the process of healing.
- Take a slice of raw papaya and rub it on the infected area of the scalp two times a day. The juice of papaya will help a lot in reducing inflammation caused by the fungus and speed up the healing process. You can also make a paste of papaya seeds apply on the ringworm patches.
- Apple cider vinegar diluted in water can be used in treating scalp ringworm. Use the solution to rinse the scalp. The acid present in the vinegar reduces the itching sensation and restores the ph balance which kills the fungi responsible for the infection.
- Cut garlic cloves and rub it on the infected areas of the scalp two times in a day for two to three weeks. In addition, you can consume raw garlic also.
- Make the juice of raw turmeric and apply it to the infected area of the scalp. You can also take turmeric orally by mixing a few drops of honey into it.
Some more tips:
- Throw away your old combs and brushes and buy new ones.
- Clean your hairbrushes and combs with disinfectant such as bleach solution.
- Wash your hair two to three times a week with a shampoo containing selenium sulfide.
- Family members must also follow the precautions to prevent the spread of infection.
- Take a lot a care to maintain your scalp hygiene.
- You must not scratch the infected area at any cost as it can spread the infection.
- Don’t play or come in contact with infected pets having bald patches.
- You must immediately consult a doctor if there is no improvement in the condition of your scalp. Oral antifungal medications and medicated shampoos can be used in the treatment.
To conclude, scalp ringworm or tinea capitis can be easily treated. Once diagnosed start the treatment soon otherwise it can cause other problems and can even cause permanent hair loss.