Athlete’s foot is a fungal infection that can be acquired when feet come into contact with damp areas predominantly in public areas like gym locker rooms or public pools. Additionally, the damp conditions in shoes and socks add to the development of this condition. The fungus that causes this condition results in the skin of the foot becoming red, swollen or burning and itching, especially between the toes.
To treat this condition, it is helpful to use ice or cold water to bring down the inflammation, reduce the pain and stop the itching. Antifungal medicines are also helpful to reduce the symptoms of this condition. As the condition gets better, feet can be soaked and scrubbed with a brush to wipe away the outer layers of the infected skin. Proper footwear that contain natural materials like leather should also be used to help ensure the best conditions for feet and to avoid the creation of a warm and damp environment. Moreover, shoes should be sprayed with medicated powders or a disinfectant such as Lysol on a frequent basis to destroy any fungus residing within them. The spray should, however, be wiped dry to prevent excess moisture from building up in the shoes. When this condition gets to its advanced stages, it could take up to a month to reduce the fungus to a point where symptoms begin to subside. Moreover, utilizing these methods doesn’t stop when the foot heals since athlete’s foot can return again when the proper precautions are not taken.
Athlete’s foot can be an irritating complication due its capability to spread easily and cause discomfort. Our foot doctor, Stavros O. Alexopoulos, DPM, can treat this condition with the care that it deserves. Please call us at (773) 561-8100 or visit us at My Chicago Foot Expert located in Chicago, IL to get a quality consultation. Our Patient Education Library can also be used to learn more about this and many other foot complications.