Can you tell me a medicine I can use for ringworm? The school nurse has identified my rash but I live along the Mexican border and it is hard to get to a “real” doctor. I would like to get my medicine in Mexico, but need the name.
Ringworm, first of all, is not a worm of any sort, but a contagious fungal infection. The fungus can infect your skin, nails and scalp. While ringworm may go away by itself, that can take months or years.
Meanwhile, without treatment, you may spread it to other parts of your body, as well as to other people. Ringworm isn’t dangerous in the sense of being life-threatening, but it can be uncomfortable, unattractive and cause patches of hair to fall out.
The answer to your question about treatment depends on where you have the ringworm. For ringworm of the scalp, you should definitely see a doctor, who will probably prescribe an oral anti-fungal medicine. Perhaps a nurse practitioner can help if you can’t get to an M.D. You may be able to buy the medication without a prescription in Mexico, but I strongly advise against it. This is potent medicine; that should be manufactured according to strict quality standards and used under medical supervision.
If you have ringworm on your skin, sometimes called body ringworm, I still think it is best to see a doctor or visit a clinic. That way you can be certain that it really is ringworm before starting treatment. The doctor can help you figure out what kind of topical medicine is best to try, based on what type of fungus is causing the problem.
At the very least, be sure to check with the pharmacist before purchasing an anti-fungal cream. Two common non-prescription anti-fungal creams for body ringworm are miconazole and clotrimazole, but there are others available which may be more suitable for you. Do not use a product containing cortisone. By the way, it may take a few weeks for body ringworm to clear up, but if you don’t start seeing some improvement within a few days of beginning treatment, you may need a different medication.
You should take precautions to keep from spreading the ringworm and from getting it again. You can become infected through direct or indirect contact with an infected person or pets such as dogs, cats, guinea pigs, etc. Pets with any kind of skin condition or hair loss should be treated by a veterinarian.
If you live in a dormitory or with roommates, don’t share personal items such as combs, brushes, hats, towels or linens. When there is heavy bathroom usage and ringworm infection is confirmed, it is probably a good idea to clean the showers, tubs, toilets and sinks frequently with a disinfectant cleaner.