With the start of school in the coming months also comes the beginning of many athletic programs and activities. With these activities, such as football and soccer, many people will find themselves battling a common foot issue…athlete’s foot.
What Is Athlete’s Foot?
Athlete’s foot is a skin disease that is commonly found on the feet, and is caused by a fungus that thrives in warm, dark, and humid environments, such as between the toes.
Since warmth and dampness of areas around showers and locker rooms, these areas become breeding grounds for fungi like athlete’s foot and plantar warts. Because these infections are common among athletes who used these facilities frequently, the term “athlete’s foot” became this particular fungi’s namesake.
What Are The Symptoms Of Athlete’s Foot?
Symptoms of athlete’s foot often consists of dry, itching, scaling skin, as well as inflammation, and blisters. When the blisters break, small areas of tissue are exposed, which ultimately cause pain and swelling.
Athlete’s foot will spread to the soles of the feet, as well as to the toenails. It can also spread to other parts of the body, such as the groin area and the underarms, especially if you scratch the infection and touch yourself on other parts of your body.
Treating Athlete’s Foot
It can be difficult to prevent athlete’s foot, especially since it is usually contracted in areas where bare feet come in contact with the fungus. However, there are things you can do to prevent getting athlete’s foot.
- Wash your feet with soap and water daily
- Keep your feet dry, especially between the toes
- Change your shoes and socks regularly to decrease moisture
- Use of a quality foot powder when participating in athletic activities or when experiencing symptoms
- Avoid going barefoot
- Wear shoes that allow the circulation of air
- Wear socks that keep your feet dry
If you need to pursue treatment form your podiatrist, they will often prescribe fungicidal chemicals, or possibly even topical or oral anti-fungal drugs when experiencing frequent cases.
For more information or to schedule an appointment, contact the Foot and Ankle Specialists of Illinois today!