What Is Athletes Foot
Athletes foot, also referred to as tinea pedi as well as ringworm of the foot, is a transmittable fungal contagion that impacts the skin of the feet. It can easily also spread from one foot to another and also to the toenails and even the hands.
The fungal infection is named athlete’s foot due to the fact that it’s typically experienced by athletes, especially ‘runners’.
The fungus that causes athlete’s foot is called Trichophyton and is frequently found on floor coverings of all types and in clothing. Athletes foot isn’t serious, however, sometimes it’s difficult to cure.
If you have diabetes or a weakened body immune system and believe you have this type of foot fungus, you should contact your physician as soon as possible.
Foot fungus will only infect the skin if the right conditions exist. It requires a warm and moist environment, for instance, the inside of a running or walking shoe.
Causes Of Athlete’s Foot
Foot fungi occurs when the tinea fungus is allowed to grow on the feet. It can be caught through direct contact with an infected person or from surfaces contaminated with the fungus. The fungus thrives in warm, moist environments and is typically found in shower areas, locker room floors and around the sides of swimming pool areas.
Symptoms Of Athletes Foot
The skin on the foot, especially between the toes, can become very itchy. A stinging sensation can also be present causing the skin to become:
Occasionally, the skin cracks, and there may well be oozing, itchy sores, as well as general inflammation. The sole of the foot and the sides of the feet might develop scaling patterns.
Bacterial infections can often arise in addition to the condition. When athletes foot is severe and induces open sores, it renders the skin more susceptible to bacteria infection.
People that do not clean their hands immediately after touching the afflicted areas on their feet are at increased risk of contracting Tinea manuum, a rare complication of athlete’s foot.
If a person scratches the afflicted area and touches other parts of their body, the infection can proliferate. It is very important, therefore, to address this kind of foot fungus as quickly as the symptoms appear. After touching the afflicted area, it is essential to clean your hands thoroughly with a proper cleansing soap and warm water.
Getting Rid Of Athletes Foot
Although it is contagious, this type of foot fungus can usually be treated with a simple over-the-counter (OTC) medication. However, individuals with a weakened immune system or diabetes afflicted, should see a doctor as soon as it develops.
Steps can be taken at home
- Wash and cleanse your feet often with soap and water
- Soak feet in salt water or diluted vinegar to clear up blisters
- Some evidence shows that soaking feet in a tea tree oil solution can help
- Make sure your feet are completely dry after washing, especially between the toes
- Wear clean natural cotton socks
- To keep the feet dry, change your shoes and socks often
- Wash towels regularly and do not share them
Athletes foot can lead to complications in some cases. Mild complications include an allergic reaction to the fungus, which can lead to blistering on the feet or hands. It’s also possible for the fungal infection to return after treatment.
Experts suggest it is better to treat the condition promptly. Early treatment significantly reduces the risk of secondary foot infections that can lead to nail fungal infections.
Nail fungus infection: Left untreated, athletes foot can spread to the toenails causing a condition known as onychomycosis. The nail becomes thick, crumbly, opaque, whitish & sometimes yellow in colour. It may cause a lot of pain and inflammation in the skin and under the nail.
Untreated toenail infections may eventually lead to more pain and problems wearing shoes, or even walking. Not only that but the nail fungus can cause internal organ damage as the fungi spreads through the body.
With any medical condition, it is best to act quickly and seek medical advice. A well known and trusted OTC remedy will generally clear up any and all fungal infections.