Ringworm is a common fungal infection that can cause a red or silvery ring-like rash on the skin.  Ringworm commonly affects arms and legs, but it can appear almost anywhere on the body. Despite its name, ringworm doesn’t have anything to do with worms. Other similar fungal infections can affect the scalp, feet, groin and nails.

Ringworm is caused by a fungus that grows on the skin. Once the fungus is established, it spreads out in rings. The centre of the ring may clear up, while a new ring of infection develops at the edge of the old ring.

What’s the cause?

Fungal spores are passed between people through direct skin contact and by sharing objects such as towels, hairbrushes and bedding. Athlete’s foot is commonly spread in gym and swimming pool changing rooms. Pets, such as dogs and cats, can have ringworm, and you can catch it by stroking them.

What are the treatments for ringworm?

Your doctor may prescribe an antifungal medication. These drugs work to kill fungi and prevent the condition from coming back. You may use the antifungal agent on your skin as a medicated shampoo, powder, cream or lotion; or you may be given a tablet so the medicine can spread throughout your body. You may also be recommended a combination of these treatments at once.

 

 


Repetitive strain injury (RSI) is a general term used to describe the pain felt in muscles, nerves and tendons caused by repetitive movement and overuse. It’s also known as work-related upper limb disorder, or non-specific upper limb pain.
The condition mostly affects parts of the upper body, such as the:

  • forearms and elbows
  • wrists and hands
  • neck and shoulders

Cold temperatures and vibrating equipment are also thought to increase the risk of getting RSI and can make the symptoms worse. Stress can also be a contributing factor. A variety of jobs can lead to RSI, such as working at an assembly line, at a supermarket checkout or typing at a computer.

It’s important to work in a comfortable environment which has been appropriately adjusted. Your employer has a legal duty to try to prevent work-related RSI and ensure anyone who already has the condition doesn’t get any worse.

How to prevent RSI:

Most employers carry out a risk assessment when you join a company to check that your work area is suitable and comfortable for you. You can request an assessment if you haven’t had one.

There are also things you can do to help reduce your risk of RSI, such as:

  • maintaining good posture at work – see how to sit at a desk correctly
  • taking regular breaks from long or repetitive tasks – it’s better to take smaller, more frequent breaks than one long lunch break
  • trying relaxation techniques if you’re stressed