Athlete’s foot is a fungal infection of the skin, medically known as Tinea Pedis, it’s usually but not exclusively found on the foot between the toes, but the infection can spread to the soles of the feet and into the nails, and it can cause significant itching, soreness and pain. Here we’ll look at its causes and what athlete’s foot treatment is available.
Athlete’s foot will develop where there is exposure to warm damp environments particularly where other people walk barefoot such and gyms, showers and pool areas. Likewise wearing shoes that are warm and damp can cultivate a fungal culture.
The condition is highly contagious and can be spread by direct or indirect contact. If it’s not treated, it can spread to hands, groin and scalp, with signs of reddened cracked, peeling and in severe cases blistering skin.
Treatment includes keeping feet clean and dry. It’s advisable for family members to use separate towels to reduce the chances of contamination. With antifungal treatments available from the chemist, coming in varying sprays, powders and lotions, it’s important to spray the inside of shoes and socks to prevent the fungus re-infecting the feet. Topical applications of creams and lotions should be continued for 2-6 weeks after the infection appears to have gone, to ensure that the new uninfected skin has been completely replaced.
If the home treatment is ineffective and the fungus is still spreading or worsening, or just not healing, it may be necessary to consult a doctor who can prescribe oral antifungal medicines for the condition.
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