5 Tips for Preventing Athlete’s Foot

Despite its name, you don’t have to be an avid athlete to get athlete’s foot. Athlete’s foot is acquired by touching someone who has the fungus or by touching a contaminated object. For example, you can get it by going barefoot in a locker room, using a towel of someone who has the condition, or touching someone’s foot with yours.

Fortunately, the podiatry team at Premier Foot & Ankle offers advanced treatment options for athlete’s foot. Athlete’s foot can be persistent and worsen quickly, so it’s important to get treatment as soon as possible if you get it. However, there are some things you can do to help keep from getting it. In this blog, the team explains how you can help avoid getting the condition.

Symptoms of athlete’s foot

When athlete’s foot becomes noticeable, you might feel an itchiness between your toes. You may see redness, flaky, scaling skin, or even raw, open patches. Aside from how it looks, you may feel the following:

Athlete’s foot can even affect your toenails, causing them to become discolored and separate from your nail bed. If not tended to, athlete’s foot can even spread to other parts of your body, such as your hands and underarms.

Steps to avoid getting athlete’s foot

While the health specialists at Premier Foot & Ankle can treat athlete’s foot, the best option is to not get it in the first place. Toward that end, here are some things you can do to help keep from getting an infection.

1. Avoid sharing personal items

Don’t share towels, socks, or shoes with anyone else. Furthermore, try not to wash your clothes with someone else's. If you do, make sure to wash them in hot water — 140°F — and dry them at a high temperature. If the water isn’t hot enough, the fungus can spread to other clothes.

2. Don’t make your feet fungus-friendly

Fungi proliferate in dark, moist places. Tight-fitting shoes and sweaty socks offer just that environment. So wash your feet frequently and keep them as dry as possible. And do the same for your socks. 

Furthermore, wear socks that are made of a synthetic fabric, as this type of material will help discourage fungal growth. If you want an extra bit of help, use antifungal products, such as foot powders and creams

3. Let your feet breathe

It’s important to give your feet room to breathe on a regular basis. Walk around your house barefoot whenever you can, and while you’re doing that, let your shoes air out. If you can, rotate between shoes so they can have a chance to dry out.

Furthermore, steer clear of rubber or plastic shoes unless they have holes in them or are very breathable, such as flip-flops. 

4. Protect your feet

Since showers, gym locker rooms, and pool areas are more prone to harbor the fungus, wear sandals when you visit these places. Putting a physical barrier between you and the fungus will help keep your feet protected.

5. Tend to your toenails

Keep your nails clean and well-trimmed. This will reduce the likelihood that the fungus will take up residence under or around a toenail. 

Treating athlete’s foot

At Premier Foot & Ankle, we’ve treated countless cases of athlete’s foot, and we know what works. First, we’ll examine your condition and go over your medical history. Then we’ll likely take a small skin sample and have it evaluated.  

If it’s athlete’s foot, we may recommend any of the following:

No matter the condition of your athlete’s foot, we'll customize a treatment plan to get your feet healthy again. 

If you have athlete’s foot and want treatment, or if you want to see if you have the condition, book an appointment over the phone with Premier Foot & Ankle today.

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