Tuesday, March 07, 2006

Yucky kids' stuff

My younger daughter contracted what I thought was a highly contagious fungal infection — the one commonly known as ringworm — from her school. Now, I'm not one to get upset over things and I realize that this is a common childhood occurrence, but the more I thought about it the more annoyed I got. Perhaps I overreacted.

The two little spots in her hairline right above her temple looked like bug bites, which would be a little unusual in the winter but this is Arkansas and bugs can thrive through our mild cold spells at the end of the year. They broke and looked like flat round irritations, neither near as big as a dime. I was puzzled by their appearance, but I didn't think much of it.

A closer look a couple of days later made me wonder whether or not it was ringworm. Her grandmother wasn't sure but her play grandmother thought like I did and encouraged me to ask her school.

I did, and right away was told it was ringworm. Who has ringworm out here, I asked? Immediately a child was pointed out to me. My daughter and this child have a hat just alike, and I was certain their hats got mixed up.

What to do? I had already been treating the spots with Melaleuca oil, just as I do everything on the skin. I had been using Melaleuca Dermatin and Triple Antibiotic Ointment as well, so it turns out I was doing the right thing. I quit using the antibiotic ointment and upped the use of the oil and Dermatin.

The bed got stripped and all the linens were washed with hot water, as was her hat. A day after the diagnosis, a little spot on her nose that had looked like a scratch manifested itself as ringworm.

What? The scarf went in the trash next. She had had this scarf wrapped around her face a couple of days before. I got kind of paranoid after that, checking her all over her face and body a few times a day for suspicious-looking little spots. Her sister got several close examinations, too, since she gets every little skin irritation that comes along.

My daughter with the ringworm missed school until figured I had cleared it up enough to where I though she wouldn't pass it along to other children. It would have been courteous of the other child's parent, and the school, to keep this other child out of school until she was no longer contagious as well. Alas, it is not the policy of the school, I found out.

What next?

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