Athlete's foot is a fungal infection. Although you can develop a fungal infection anywhere on your body, athlete's foot is only on your feet. Because locker rooms, swimming pools, and shower rooms tend to harbor a lot of fungi, athletes tend to suffer this condition frequently, and that's how it was named. Even if you're never in a place like a locker room or public pool, your feet are particularly vulnerable to fungal infections because they're so often enclosed in a damp, dark environment (your socks and shoes).
Athlete's foot can cause a variety of symptoms, including:
Although athlete's foot is usually worst between the toes, it can move into other parts of your feet including your toenails and the bottom of your feet. It's actually possible to spread the fungus to another part of your body if you scratch and then touch skin elsewhere.
Your Foot and Ankle Specialists podiatrist will do a thorough foot exam to verify an athlete's foot diagnosis and then prescribe a remedy based on your needs. For a mild case of athlete's foot, your podiatrist may recommend an over-the-counter remedy; however, you may need a stronger antifungal ointment to get rid of athlete's foot. For the most severe cases of athlete's foot, your podiatrist may prescribe an oral antifungal medication.
A few careful foot hygiene measures can help you avoid athlete's foot. The following are some good practices to follow.
With the lifestyle changes above and your podiatrist's help, you can avoid recurrent athlete's foot. To stomp out athlete's foot, use the online appointment maker or call the Foot and Ankle Specialists location closest to you now.