Ringworm (dermatophytosis or tinea) is a common fungal infection which infects various skin parts like arms, legs, scalp, fingernails, toenails, etc. This infection is highly contagious, and hence, one needs to be very careful about it. The symptoms of ringworm include scaly, dry and rough skin with round red spots, loss of hair in patches, crusting, sores filled with pus, fever, and swelling of lymph nodes. Although many anti-fungal creams are available for ringworm treatment, it often happens that they do not work properly or have some side effects. We have certain home remedies that work wonders in getting rid of ringworm.
Home Remedies to Get Rid of Ringworm
1. Nail Polish
Dip a brush in clear nail polish and apply it on the affected area. It will suffocate the fungus and will not let it spread. Nail polish must be kept for 10-12 hours before washing it off with water. Repeat this process for a few days, until the ringworm reduces (1).
2. Colloidal Silver
Colloidal Silver is a great antibiotic, and also possess anti-microbial properties (2). It is used for the treatment of various yeast infections, including ringworm (3). It destroys the infection caused by ringworm in a week’s time if applied twice daily.
3. Raw Papaya
The anti-fungal property of papaya is an effective remedy to get rid of ringworm (4).
The enzyme content of papaya kills fungus and reduces inflammation. Apply the pulp of raw papaya over the fungus infected area. Leave this for 15-20 minutes and then wash it off. Repeat this 2-3 times every day. Alternatively, you can also use papaya seeds. Dry and then crush the seeds to make powder. Then add water to make a paste, now apply it on infected skin, leave this for 15-20 minutes, rinse using water. Repeat the process 3 times a day (5).
4. Oregano Oil
The strong antibacterial and anti-fungal activity of rosemary and thyme oil play an important role to get rid of ringworm (6, 7). Mix 3-5 drops each of oregano oil, sweet almond oil and rosemary oil with 1-2 drops of thyme oil. Apply this mixture of oil to the affected area 3 times a day.
5. Camphor Oil
Mix some camphor powder with sesame oil. Smear the resultant paste on the rashes caused by ringworm, 2-3 times a day. You can also apply camphor powder to alleviate the symptoms of ringworm.
Note – Camphor is poisonous, it is not meant for internal use
7. Apple Cider Vinegar
According to The microdilution technique, apple cider Vinegar possesses anti-fungal properties that can be used to get rid of ringworm and other fungal infections (17).
Soak a cotton ball in some Apple Cider Vinegar and apply it on the affected area. Wrap a bandage around it to hold it in place. Repeat this procedure for a few days until the ringworm disappears (18).
8. Garlic Extract
Place garlic slices on the affected area and wrap a bandage around it so that it stays in place. Leave it overnight for the best results. Repeat the process until ringworm disappears (21). Alternatively, you can also apply garlic gel directly to the ringworm (22).
9. Coconut Oil
Studies have proved that virgin coconut oil possess anti fungal properties that can be used for the treatment of ringworm (23). Apply some coconut oil on the affected area and let it stay for the whole night. This helps reduce the spread of infection (24).
10. Jojoba Oil
Wax esters found in jojoba oil play a very important role in skin treatments. The anti-inflammatory property of this oil is used to cure skin infections (25) and get rid of ringworm. Mix a few drops each of jojoba and lavender oil. Apply it to the affected area. This is an extremely helpful and soothing remedy for curing ringworm rashes (26).
11. Mustard Seeds
Soak mustard seeds in water for 30 minutes. In the morning, grind them to make a thick paste. Apply this paste on the affected area and leave it as it is for 45-60 minutes, then wash it off with lukewarm water. This will relieve itching and irritation caused due to ringworm infection (27, 28).
Vinegar or acetic acid possess anti-fungal and antibacterial properties which prove beneficial in the treatment of ringworm (29). Mix some vinegar and salt to make a paste. Use this mixture on the affected areas and leave on for 5-10 minutes, then rinse with water. This remedy will cure the infection in 7 days.
Note: This method may irritate skin.
Studies have proved that Ammonium salts possess significant anti-fungal activities (30). Add ½ cup of salt to a tub filled with warm water. Soak the affected area in this water for at least 30 minutes.
- Alternatively, add a little water to sea salt. With the help of a washcloth, apply this paste on the affected area. After 5-10 minutes, rinse off with water. Use this remedy 3 times a day continuously for 1 week.
14. Ginger Tea
Boil some ginger in water and apply it on the affected area with a cotton swab. Alternatively, you can sip this tea thrice a day. Ginger effectively cures ringworm infection as it contains anti-fungal components (31).
15. Vegetable Juice
Drink carrot and spinach juice daily. This will help heal the infection from within (32).
16. Turmeric Juice
Turmeric has been traditionally used to get rid of ringworm because of its anti fungal properties (33).
Swallow a mixture of 1 teaspoon of turmeric juice and 1 teaspoon of raw honey, immediately after, apply turmeric juice over affected skin. Use this remedy daily until the infection is cured. Alternatively, you can also apply paste of turmeric and honey 3 times daily on the ringworm (34).
Herbal Remedies to Overcome Ringworm
17. Tea Tree Oil
Tea tree oil is one of the best anti-bacterial, anti-fungal and a powerful germicide (35). It is traditionally used in Australia for its medicinal properties. It is a topical medication that can cure several skin infections and ailments (36).
Mix tea tree oil and water in equal proportion. Apply this mixture to the infected skin using cotton ball. Repeat the process two times daily for a month to cure ringworm (37).
Note – Do not consume it as it can be toxic.
18. Aloe Vera
It has been proved in many studies that aloe vera is an outstanding ingredient for treating skin diseases and infections (38). Apply aloe vera gel directly onto the affected area 3 times daily until you feel the difference (39, 40).
19. Chamomile Tea
Chamomile plant is in much demand because of its pharmacological and pharmaceutical properties. Its essential oil has antibacterial and fungicidal properties that alleviates infection (41, 42). When using the plant to get rid of ringworm, apply chamomile tea or chamomile oil on the affected area with the help of a cotton swab. This will help erase the infection in a few days.
21. Lemongrass Tea
Lemongrass is an effective compound against fungal infection and an aid to get rid of ringworm. It is used as an ingredient in many drugs that are used for the treatment of fungal infections and skin ailments (45, 46). Drink lemongrass tea thrice a day and also apply used lemongrass tea bags over the affected area for quick results (47).
Goldenseal is used in America for several health conditions like skin infections, gonorrhea and ulcers (48, 49). Boil some goldenseal herb in water and apply it on the affected area with the help of a cotton ball. Alternatively, add 4-5 drops of tincture to your fruit juice and sip it thrice a day. Its anti-microbial properties will prevent the infection from spreading.
Licorice has around 25 fungicidal properties that aid in treating ringworm (50). Boil 6 teaspoons of licorice root powder in 1 cup water for about 20 minutes. Strain it and apply this mixture to the affected area at least 3 times a day (51).
24. Azadirachta Indica
Azadirachta Indica has been traditionally used to treat skin infections (52). Take some leaves of Azadirachta indica. Crush them to make a paste. Spread it on the infected areas. You can also mix aloe vera gel in the prepared paste for better results.
25. Lavender Oil
Myrrh contains sesquiterpene which has anti fungal properties (55). Make a paste of myrrh and goldenseal along with water. Apply this paste thrice daily on the affected area. This is another good anti-fungal treatment for ringworms (56).
27. Olive Leaf
28. Holy Basil
The outstanding medicinal properties of basil have been studied in hundreds of experiment (59, 60). Extract the juice by crushing some holy basil leaves. Smear it on the affected area twice or thrice a day. Use this remedy until ringworm heals completely (61).
29. Grapefruit Seed Extract
Grapefruit Seed Extract has anti fungal properties (62). Mix 4-5 drops of grapefruit seed extract with 3 tablespoons of lukewarm water. Immerse a cotton ball in this mixture and apply it on the infection.
- Keep skin clean and dry (63).
- Take bath after a sporting activity (64).
- If there is itchiness at any part of the skin, take action to eradicate it.
- Shampoo hair regularly (65).
- Do not wear tight-fitting clothes.
- Take your pet to a veterinary if it gets ringworm infection (66).
- Wash your child’s hands whenever they come back home after having played outdoor games.
- Do not share your clothes, towels, hair brush with anyone (67).
- Try not to go barefoot around locker rooms or around the pool (68).
- Avoid touching itchy or bald spots of pets (69) (70).