Oh So Annoying Athlete’s Foot!

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At FL Foot Health, we know the itch from athlete’s foot is enough to drive a patient crazy. This skin infection is caused by a fungus and most often starts between your toes. In addition to the nearly unbearable itching, other signs of athlete’s foot include:

  • Dry skin

  • Scaling

  • Inflammation

  • Blisters

  • Cracks in the skin

These symptoms can occur singly or in combination. When the blisters break, they expose small raw areas of skin which can result in pain and swelling and the possibility of a secondary infection.

Getting Relief

Your podiatrist will be able to determine if your symptoms are caused by athlete’s foot and not another skin condition such as eczema or psoriasis, which may have similar symptoms. If you have athlete’s foot, the foot doctor may prescribe topical and/or oral anti-fungal medications for you to take. An antibiotic may also be necessary if a bacterial infection is also present. Left untreated, athlete’s foot can spread to other parts of the body including the toenails, groin and underarm.

Steps for Prevention

The fungus that causes athlete’s foot loves places where people walk barefoot and that have moisture and warmth. For this reason, gyms, changing areas, nail salons, public pools and restrooms at the beach are all places where the fungus will lurk. Because it is spread by direct contact, one of the best ways to prevent athlete’s foot is by keeping your feet covered in public places.

Other ways to prevent fungal infections of the feet include:

  • Washing feet daily and drying them completely—especially between the toes

  • Keeping feet dry by using talcum or anti-fungal powder

  • Changing socks as soon as you notice they are damp

  • Not sharing socks, shoes, towels, nail clippers or any items that touch another person’s feet

For more information about athlete’s foot and other conditions that can cause podiatric discomfort, contact us or subscribe to our free e-newsletter.