Preventing the spread of fungal infections 

The advice outlined below will help to stop fungal infections from spreading.

The fungi that cause tinea infections can survive on items such as furniture, hairbrushes, clothing and towels, and can be spread through contact with these items.

Therefore, if someone in your household has a fungal infection, you should:

  • avoid sharing personal items – such as combs, hairbrushes, towels, clothing and bed linen
  • avoid scratching the affected areas of your skin or scalp, because it could spread the infection to other parts of your body

It’s important that other household members check themselves for signs of infection and get treatment if necessary.

If you suspect that your pet is the source of the infection, take them to your vet for treatment. Patches of missing fur is a sign that an animal has ringworm. Always wash your hands after touching a pet with the infection.

If someone in your family has a fungal infection, there is no need for them to stay off work or school. However, treatment should be started as soon as possible. Good personal hygiene should also be followed to stop it spreading to other children.

Wearing something on your feet in gym and swimming pool changing rooms will reduce your chances of getting athlete’s foot.

Find out how to treat fungal infections.

Page last reviewed: 05/03/2015

Next review due: 05/03/2017