A common fungal infection of the feet is known as athlete’s foot. It is caused by a fungus that thrives in warm and moist environments. These can consist of public swimming pools, locker rooms, and shower room floors. If you are to visit these types of places, it is suggested that appropriate shoes are worn, as this may help to prevent the fungus from entering your skin. There are also other factors that may make it easier for this condition to develop. These may include wearing socks that are wet for the majority of the day, or having a bandage on the skin for an extended period of time which may soften the skin. Common symptoms that are associated with athlete’s foot can include intense itchiness between the toes and on the bottom of the feet, and in more severe cases, blisters may develop. If you feel you have athlete’s foot, it is strongly suggested that you consult with a podiatrist who can guide you toward the proper treatment.
Athlete’s foot is often an uncomfortable condition to experience. Thankfully, podiatrists specialize in treating athlete’s foot and offer the best treatment options. If you have any questions about athlete’s foot, consult with Dr. Michael Doughty from Doughty Podiatry, P.A. Our doctor will assess your condition and provide you with quality treatment.
What Is Athlete’s Foot?
Tinea pedis, more commonly known as athlete’s foot, is a non-serious and common fungal infection of the foot. Athlete’s foot is contagious and can be contracted by touching someone who has it or infected surfaces. The most common places contaminated by it are public showers, locker rooms, and swimming pools. Once contracted, it grows on feet that are left inside moist, dark, and warm shoes and socks.
The most effective ways to prevent athlete’s foot include:
- Thoroughly washing and drying feet
- Avoid going barefoot in locker rooms and public showers
- Using shower shoes in public showers
- Wearing socks that allow the feet to breathe
- Changing socks and shoes frequently if you sweat a lot
Athlete’s foot initially occurs as a rash between the toes. However, if left undiagnosed, it can spread to the sides and bottom of the feet, toenails, and if touched by hand, the hands themselves. Symptoms include:
- Scaly and peeling skin
Diagnosis and Treatment
Diagnosis is quick and easy. Skin samples will be taken and either viewed under a microscope or sent to a lab for testing. Sometimes, a podiatrist can diagnose it based on simply looking at it. Once confirmed, treatment options include oral and topical antifungal medications.
If you have any questions, please feel free to contact our office located in Baltimore, MD. We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot care needs.
Read more about How to Deal with Athlete's Foot