There are many types of skin infections that look exactly the same but require different approach and medications for effective treatment. For instance, psoriasis and ringworm are two skin conditions that have similar symptoms but are actually very different from each other.
Psoriasis is a chronic skin condition. Basically, it is an immune disorder wherein the immune system misbehaves and causes the skin cells to mature rapidly, resulting in dry, red, thick patches with white or silver scales on the skin. Under normal conditions, skin cells grow, live, die and fall off in approximately 4 weeks, but in case of psoriasis, the skin matures in just a few days. On the other hand, ringworm is the fungal skin infection which results in red and itchy circular rashes.
Psoriasis and fungal skin infections have similar signs and symptoms. It’s very difficult to figure out what you are looking at in one glance.
Some common symptoms of psoriasis include:
- Reddish skin patches called plaques
- White or silvery patches
- Itching, cracking or bleeding
Psoriasis can appear anywhere on your body such as scalp, knees, elbows and genitals. The patches can join together and can cover larger areas of the skin.
The symptoms of ringworm look similar in many ways. The condition causes a red, scaly, ring-like rash which may or may not be itchy. The outer circle of the infection appears more reddish than the inner part. Patches can occur in singles or in clusters.
Ringworm is caused by fungi called dermatophytes and can affect your hair, skin, nails or feet. It is highly contagious and can be picked up through direct contact with another person having a fungal infection, infected animal, public pools or bathrooms, and other unhygienic factors.
On the other hand, psoriasis is an autoimmune disease which is not contagious in nature. Though it is a hereditary disease, it can also be result of obesity, smoking, stress, and other environmental factors.
While fungal infections like ringworm can be easily treated with an antifungal cream for ringworm or a top quality antifungal ointment, it is important to note that only a doctor can detect whether you have psoriasis or not. Although there’s no cure for psoriasis till now, light therapy, oral medications, biological injections, and topical creams can lessen the severity of the symptoms.
Whether it’s psoriasis or ringworm, both require timely treatments. In case your condition doesn’t improve or gets worse even after using topical creams, visit your doctor to ensure effective treatment for ringworm or psoriasis.