Beard Fungus, also known as tinea barbae or folliculitis, begins when blockage of the follicle, friction from clothing, or shaving damages the hair follicles. These damaged follicles are then invaded by bacteria called Staphylococcus (staph).
A form of a staph infection in the bearded area of the face involving hair follicles is the barber’s itch. Careless shaving can worsen the condition. Beard fungus is quite similar to barber's itch, but it arises from fungal infection.
Beard Fungus: Common Causes
Tinea barbae is caused by fungus. Fungi causing infections dwell and multiply in numbers on the outer layer of the skin and on the hair.
Bear fungal infections is caused by Trichophyton verrucosum. Some animals including cattle and other farm animals can be carriers of these fungi.
Beard Fungus: Signs and Symptoms
Beard fungal infections appear to have severe itchiness, rashes and redness in the skin area. In severe cases pimples or pustules may begin to grow in surrounding parts of the hair follicles. Not only will it occur on the beard, but some symptoms may manifest in the neck or groin area. Genital lesions can also be present.
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Beard Fungus: Treatment
Treatments for beard fungus are similar to that of tinea capitis since the two involve fungal infections in the hair. When shaving or depilation, it is suggested to be with warm compresses to eliminate debris and crusts. Topical medications with antifungal active ingredients can be applied, but beard fungal infections require oral medications to be administered.
Make sure to exercise the following steps to prevent irritation of hair follicles especially in the beard:
Caution must be taken to prevent secondary infection from infected clothing and washcloths. Warm moist compresses can be helpful in depleting widespread of folliculitis.
- Do away from creating friction with your clothing.
- As much as possible avoid shaving the infected area if possible. Use sterilized razor blades or electric razors if shaving should become necessary.
- Always keep surrounding areas of hair follicles clean so as to avoid further complications of tinea barbae.