Athlete’s foot is one of the most recurring infections of the feet. Athlete’s foot is a skin disease caused by dermatophytes, a variety of fungi responsible for jock itch and ringworm. These kinds of fungi thrive in warm, moist environments. These fungi feed on keratin, a protein most often found in hair, nails, and skin. Because feet meet all of these conditions, Athlete’s Foot earned its name through its common recurrence among athletes in showers, locker rooms, and swimming pools. Luckily, Athlete’s Foot can be treated. Our podiatrists can provide several treatments to remove the infection and advise preventative measures to protect your feet from the athlete’s foot from reoccurring.
How Did I Develop Athlete’s Foot?
Athlete’s foot occurs in warm, damp areas. These breeding grounds for the fungi cause immediate spread through direct skin-to-skin contact, such as walking barefoot in locker rooms, showering without shower shoes, using someone else’s towel, and sharing clothing items with others is all it takes for the infection to spread. People who already had an athlete’s foot are at higher risk of spreading the infection to others.
It’s important to note that many other conditions, such as eczema and psoriasis, can mimic its symptoms. Fungi aren’t the only type of infection that causes athlete’s foot. Sometimes bacterial infections can occur alongside the fungal infection and spread to the lymph system and cause bacterial infections.
Some symptoms that commonly occur with athlete’s foot include:
- Extremely dry, scaly skin along with the heels and soles
- White, peeling, cracking, skin in between the toes
- Multiple blisters along the skin
- Green tinge, indicating a bacterial infection from pseudomonas
- Inflammation and swelling
How Can A Podiatrist Treat Athlete’s Foot?
Our podiatrists at Appalachian Foot & Ankle Associates can determine whether your athlete’s foot is caused by a fungal or a bacterial infection and treat it accordingly. We will advise preventative measures for good foot hygiene throughout your treatment to help prevent your athlete’s foot from reappearing, including washing your feet, using talcum powder, and changing your shoes and socks regularly to avoid infection. Our treatment options for athlete’s foot include:
- Oral or Topical Medication – Antifungal medications will be prescribed to help remove the infection from your feet, and we’ll provide a specific treatment plan according to the severity of your fungal infection. If its origin is bacterial, medicines such as penicillin may be prescribed.
- Laser therapy – If medications don’t remove the infection, then laser treatments may also be used to remove the infection
If your toenails have begun infected and begin to turn yellow, call us right away to determine its cause and treat it accordingly. At Appalachian Foot & Ankle Associates, we focus on providing the most proven treatments for people with foot disorders, infections, and injuries to help them heal and get back to enjoying life. For more information about our treatments for athlete’s foot, please contact us at 828-277-8402 to schedule an appointment at any one of our Marion or Asheville, NC locations.