Everything you need to know about athlete’s foot and how to get rid of it
Athlete’s Foot, a dreaded, yet common condition, unfortunately carries a negative stigma, along with itchy, flaky skin and sometimes unsightly, discolored toenails. If you suffer from athlete’s foot, the very worst thing you can do is ignore it! Understanding the causes and symptoms of athlete’s foot will help you treat your athlete’s foot effectively.
What causes athlete’s foot?
While fungi and bacteria are commonly found on the skin, healthy skin forms a barrier that protects the body from infection. However, if the skin is damaged, the fungus can enter. Then the body’s warm, moist environment—ideal for fungal growth—allows the fungi to naturally overpopulate. When a fungus infects the skin of the foot and in between the toes, it’s called athlete’s foot, or tinea pedis.
A cut or injury to the toenails or the skin on the feet creates an obvious entry point for athlete’s foot-producing fungi. However, there are less obvious ways your feet can become susceptible to athlete’s foot. Moist, wet skin macerates, or softens and breaks down, making it vulnerable. Feet that are commonly confined to sweaty shoes during sports or exercise can develop entry points for fungus. Dry and brittle feet can also be susceptible to athlete’s foot because cracks and micro-tears may be present on the surface of the skin.
Keep in mind, athlete’s foot is contagious. It’s possible to get (or share!) athlete’s foot by walking barefoot in an area where an infected foot has been, such as a public swimming pool or gym shower, or by sharing socks and shoes with an infected person. This makes athlete’s foot treatment and prevention so important.
What are the symptoms of athlete’s foot?
Athlete’s foot appears as red, peeling, scaling and itchy feet. These symptoms may also be present between the toes. Feet may also develop a foul odor, blisters and/or sores.
What is the best treatment for athlete’s foot?
Left untreated, athlete’s foot can be painful and even cause permanent damage, so it’s important to address the issue quickly. In serious cases, athlete’s foot treatment may require a doctor’s visit. But in many cases, athlete’s foot can be treated at home. Your nail technician or pedicurist can help you decide on the right athlete’s foot home care products or refer you to a doctor, if needed.
Beware! Some commonly recommended at-home athlete’s foot remedies are ineffective and will only allow the athlete’s foot infection to progress further. For example, undiluted iodine and repeated use of apple cider vinegar-based solutions can actually damage the skin causing more harm.
Look for athlete’s foot treatment products like Footlogix® Peeling Skin Formula that contain clotrimazole, an ingredient commonly used to treat fungal infections. Footlogix® has a complete line of anti-fungal products (Nail Tincture Spray, Peeling Skin Formula, and Rough Skin Formula) that contain clotrimazole, as well as other ingredients proven to promote healing, calm irritation and stabilize damaged skin barriers—killing athlete’s foot and providing relief from the itching, peeling, and irritation often associated with fungal infections. These products contain no added moisturizers and each is formulated with Dermal Infusion Technology® to effectively deliver ingredients deep into the skin.
For best results, apply athlete’s foot treatment – Footlogix® Peeling Skin Formula—to clean, dry feet twice a day for two weeks and then daily until conditions are resolved. This athlete’s foot treatment leaves no greasy residue. When applying topical mousses, ensure the product gets in between the toes where athlete’s foot loves to hide.
Can athlete’s foot be prevented?
Yes, it can! The goal is to eliminate and prevent points of entry for the microscopic, athlete’s foot-causing fungus to enter the skin. Keeping the skin intact, supple and healthy is your best protection. Follow these “golden” rules for preventing athlete’s foot:
Moisturize regularly to avoid micro-tears and cracking.
Make sure feet are always clean and dry to prevent moist, macerated skin. Check out the Footlogix® Sweaty Feet Formula. It acts as an astringent to help reduce perspiration of the skin on the feet. It’s a great companion product for keeping the sweaty feet dry and preventing athlete’s foot.
Always wear clean socks and ensure shoes are completely dry. The Footlogix® Foot Deodorant and Footlogix® Shoe Deodorant sprays are perfect for keeping. While most deodorant products simply mask odors with artificial fragrance, these Footlogix® products actually kill bacteria that cause foul odors.
If possible, wear foot covering in wet, public areas.
Get regular professional pedicures and ensure the salon properly disinfects implements between appointment.
If you’re prone to athlete’s foot, regular maintenance with a topical formula containing clotrimazole like the Footlogix Anti-Fungal Toe Tincture Spray, Peeling Skin Formula, or Rough Skin Formula can control the overgrowth of fungi which lead to a fungal infection such as athlete’s foot.