Athlete’s foot is a common infection of the skin and nails by fungus and can be characterized by itching, scaling, redness or the formation of small blisters. The most common areas affected are the bottom of the foot and between the toes. The fungus has the potential to spread to the toenails, causing them to become thickened, discoloured and painful. While this infection is common among athletes, keep in mind that it can affect non-athletes as well.
Causes of Athlete’s Foot
The feet are vulnerable because shoes commonly create a warm, dark and humid environment that encourages fungal growth.
Athlete’s foot can also be contracted in dressing rooms, hotel and locker room showers, and swimming pool locker rooms where bare feet may come in contact with fungus.
What can you do?
Keep shoes and socks dry as a preventative measure.
Practice good feet hygiene, including daily washing of the feet with soap and water; drying feet carefully, especially between the toes; changing shoes regularly; and wearing wicking acrylic, wool or polypropylene socks.
What can a Podiatrist do?
Obtain a fungal culture.
Prescribe topical medications.
Prescribe oral anti-fungal medications.