Do Essential Oils Help With Ringworm?
Ringworm, also known as dermatophytosis, is a skin condition caused by fungi and not worms as the name implies. Ringworm infection usually appears as red, itchy, scaly patches, and ring-like. It is unsightly and can cause serious cosmetic concerns. Although the condition is common in children, it can affect people of all ages. Worst still, it is contagious and zoonotic, meaning you can be infected if you are exposed to an infected person or animal.
Causes and Symptoms of Ringworm
Up to 40 different fungi are responsible for ringworm, especially the Trichophyton, Microsporum, or Epidermophyton type. Fungi inhabit moist, warm areas: places like public showers, locker rooms, swimming pools, skin folds. The infection usually starts with itching. The area then gets redder, scaly and patchy. Soon, the patches may ooze and turn to blisters. When hair scalp is affected, bald patches develop. Nails discoloration and thickening occurs.
Ringworm Treatment & Essential Oils
There is no specified cure for this skin disease. However, there are over-the-counter drugs and antifungal creams that help provide relief, but even these do not have lasting effects and tend to have unfavorable side effects. Several natural home remedies for ringworm exist, but chief among them are essential oils.
Essential oils have been used successfully to treat various fungal diseases such as toenail fungus, athlete’s foot, jock itch, etc. They do not just inhibit and eliminate the fungi; they also rejuvenate the skin and prevent future occurrences. In this article are the essential oils you will find beneficial in your fight against ringworm.
What Are The Best Essential Oils for Ringworm Treatment?
The uplifting aroma of Lavender oil makes it an excellent sleep inducer and stress reliever. If you have acne, eczema, psoriasis, or any skin condition, Lavender Oil works too. Its use as a remedy for many health conditions makes it a versatile and universal oil. Lavender oil is a powerful antifungal and antiseptic agent that will curb the actions of the ringworm fungus. It will not only soothe the itching and inflammation; it will also infiltrate the skin, fight the ringworm infection, heal the skin and restore its complexion.
How to use Lavender Oil
To use the oil topically, you need to dilute it with a carrier oil like jojoba, sweet almond or coconut oil. Mix 5-10 drops with a teaspoonful of the carrier oil. Rub the mixture directly on the affected area and keep the place open so the oil can dry naturally. Apply 3-4 times daily.
You can also use by adding 8-10 drops of the oil to your bath water and soaking yourself for 20-30 minutes.
Alternatively, mix ten drops of lavender oil with one ounce of Aloe Vera gel to make a skin moisturizing skin. It will not only heal the skin but also prevent future breakouts.
Oregano is popular as a culinary piece, but its healing powers have been proven. Oregano oil has two active antibacterial agent, carvacrol, and thymol, which fights many kinds of microbial infections. The use of Oregano oil is not farfetched; it is also a quality broad-spectrum antifungal agent that works excellently against fungal diseases, including the toenail fungus. In a study, Oregano oil was found to inhibit fungal activities by 95% within six hours.
How to use Oregano Oil for ringworm treatment
For topical usage, dilute the oil with your preferred carrier oil. Preferably, mix eight drops of oregano oil with one teaspoonful of carrier oil and store in a glass jar. Massage the affected area with the mix at least three times daily with a 5-hour interval. Within three days, you will observe noticeable differences.
You can use the oil with your diffuser, especially before going to bed.
If the fungus infection occurs on your tongue, inner cheek or lips, use oregano oil as mouthwash. Try not to ingest as it may give a burning sensation. Oregano Oil is a natural remedy for bad breath.
Tea Tree Oil
Tea Tree Oil is gotten from a plant native to Australia. Because of its profound health benefits, tea tree oil is one of the most popular oils in the world. It has a potent antifungal agent called Terpenoid that works effectively against ringworm fungi. The presence of monoterpenes and sesquiterpenes in the oil is largely responsible for its therapeutic actions. According to a study, tea tree oil was found to inhibit fungal activities, causing total depletion within eight hours of treatment. This is because tea tree oil has a damaging effect on fungus cellular membranes. It is also one of the best essential oils for ringworm in children.
How to use Tea Tree oil for ringworm
Tea Tree oil is a strong oil and therefore should be diluted with a carrier oil before use. Mix 8 drops of the oil with one teaspoonful of sweet almond or jojoba oil. Rub the mixture on the affected area thrice daily to get speedy relief.
Diffuse the oil in your house to eliminate fungal spores.
You can add 5 drops of the oil to your shampoo.
For crush and tongue fungus, gargle the diluted oil for a few minutes. Be careful not to ingest the oil as it may irritate your stomach walls.
Neem oil is extracted from the neem tree, a plant native to India, and has been used since the ancient times to treat various ailments. In this oil are various compounds with strong antimicrobial, antifungal and hypoglycemic, and insecticidal properties. A 2003 study done in India revealed its effectiveness as an antifungal agent, strong enough to disturb the growth patterns of the disease-causing organism. Besides its use for ringworm, it is also useful in treating other fungal infections like athlete’s foot, toenail fungus, jock itch, etc. Neem oil is also an excellent antioxidant and reduces the itches and skin dryness.
How to use Neem oil for ringworm
For topical use, dilute five drops of neem oil with one teaspoonful of jojoba oil. Store the mixture in a sealed glass jar. Shake well and apply the oil using a cotton pad on the affected area. Repeat this thrice daily and continue for three weeks. The infection should clear up within the first ten days.
Many are aware of the aroma and the power of thyme as a culinary piece. However, only a few are aware of the amazing health benefits of the oil extracted from the herb. Thyme oil is a powerful antifungal agent works effectively in treating ringworm. A study conducted in Serbia showed that 1% of thyme oil is enough to counter fungus Trichophyton rubrum. Its antifungal actions can be accredited to the presence of thymol and p-cymene.
To use Thyme Oil topically, you will need to dilute five drops of thyme oil with one teaspoonful of carrier oil. Massage the diluted oil on the affected area using a cotton stub and repeat thrice daily.
Lemongrass oil is extracted from a popular medicinal plant in Southeast Asia. Its therapeutic properties include antibacterial, antifungal, anti-inflammatory, antimalarial among others. These properties are highlighted by the presence of terpenes, aldehyde, ketones and esters. Studies showed that Lemongrass oil inhibits the activities of ringworm fungi, preventing it from spreading to other areas of the skin. It is also a natural antiseptic, that when used, heals wounds faster and prevents infection. This oil is not only effective; it is also safe for use and poses no side effects.
How to use:
- Dilute six drops of lemongrass oil with one teaspoonful of carrier oil.
- Rub a thin layer of the mix over the affected area.
- Repeat up to three to four times daily for the next weeks.
Peppermint oil is a powerful astringent, antibacterial, antifungal and antispasmodic. It is a popular ingredient in cough mix, toothpaste, etc. and is used as a natural remedy for many breathing conditions. Peppermint Oil is an effective remedy for ringworm, because of its inhibitive actions against the fungus.
Before using peppermint oil for ringworm treatment, dilute it with a suitable carrier oil. Apply it on the affected area several times daily.
Essential Oil Recipes for Ringworm Treatment
Recipe 1 – blend for ringworm relief
- 4 drops of lemon oil
- 4 drops of lavender oil
- 4 drops of thyme oil
- 10 drops of oregano oil
- 10 drops of rosemary oil
- Sweet Almond or olive oil (as the carrier oil)
Directions: Mix the essential oils before adding the carrier oil. Apply the blend on the affected area up to three times daily. This will help soothe the itchy, dry and inflamed skin.
Recipe 2 –
- 2% of thyme oil
- 5% of rosemary oil
- 5% of oregano oil
Mix these ingredients with a carrier oil and massage onto the affected area.
Further Prevention Tips For Ringworm Treatmetn
- Try not to share towels, sheets, or clothing.
- In case of exposure, wash the cloth in hot water using antifungal soap.
- Avoid touching bald spots or lesions on infected animals or humans.
- Maintain proper hygiene and diet.
Essential oils could be natural remedies for ringworm treatment. Nevertheless, before topical application, make sure you dilute the oil to prevent skin irritation. If in doubt, perform a quick skin patch test to ascertain its concentration. It is important that you keep your environment clean and hygienic to prevent fungi from thriving.
When buying essential oils, ensure you buy only therapeutic grade and practice only safe usage. If you are already on medication, consult your doctor or a medical expert before using essential oils.