Athlete’s foot, or a foot infection caused by the fungus tinea pedis, is a common condition that affects nearly 3 million americans every year.
The moisture and warmth in showers, pools, and locker rooms serve as breeding grounds for this advantageous fungi. Due to its origins around athletics, athlete’s foot was aptly named for its common appearance to those who are frequently active and participate in team sports and hectic lifestyles.
Common signs of athlete’s foot include:
- Dry skin
- Itchy skin
- Scaly and peeling skin
Resulting blisters and peeling skin can leave sores that can be infected further by the fungi, so it is critical to address the condition with a trained podiatrist as early as possible to prevent spreading and transmission to others.
Due to the nature of fungi, athlete’s foot has the potential to spread throughout the body as a result of itching the affected area and then touching areas such as the armpits or groin. The potential for contamination is great with this fungi, so preventing transmission and ensuring that you are careful around friends and family is important.
Athlete’s Foot Treatment Options
Many fungicidal chemicals used to eliminate tinea pedis fail because they do not eliminate the source of the fungi that lies within deeper layers of the skin.
Topical or oral anti-fungal drugs are prescribed with growing frequency and varying success.
Since there is no single cause of athlete’s foot, the only way to permanently remove the infection from your life is to see a foot specialist that can identify the exact culprit, and eliminate it from the source through a professionally approved and guided process.
How To Prevent
The infection usually begins in between the toes, as this moist, warm, and dark environment encases the ideal environment
In mild cases of the infection, it is important to keep the feet dry by dusting shoes, socks, towels, and other fabrics with foot powder.
The feet should be thoroughly cleaned frequently, and all areas around the toes dried.
Patients with tinea pedis should be educated that reinfection can occur if they are re-exposed to dermatophytes (fungi that irritate the skin).
Old shoes are often sources of reinfection and should be disposed of or treated with antifungal powders.
Patients should be cautioned to wear protective footwear at communal pools and baths, and should attempt to keep their feet dry by limiting occlusive footwear. When occlusive footwear is worn, wearing cotton socks and adding a drying powder with antifungal action in the shoes may be helpful in lowering the risk of contraction.
Our professional podiatrist and foot specialists have extensive experience in providing wholesome treatment options for eliminating athlete’s foot, as well as educating their patients on best practices that will greatly reduce the risk of exposure.
With state of the art tools that can safely eliminate the majority of athlete’s foot-causing fungi, our clinic can help you maintain great foot and nail health.
Contact us today to receive a personalized evaluation!