You’ll first notice athlete’s foot, or tinea pedis, as itchy scaly skin that develops between your toes. The rash can spread to other areas of your foot, appear red, and sometimes develop blisters.
If you develop athlete’s foot, you can likely wipe it out with at-home treatments. If it doesn’t clear up in about two weeks, it’s time to contact experts like Dr. Honick and Dr. Williamson of Go Feet in Mays Landing and Linwood, New Jersey. Reach out to us if you have poor circulation because of a condition like diabetes at the first signs of athlete’s foot as you’re at greater risk of complications.
Here’s the action you should take if you have athlete’s foot.
Athlete’s foot usually happens when you have sweaty feet that have been confined within tight-fitting shoes. It may look scaly and itch and burn. You may notice the redness and itching intensifies at night.
Sometimes, athlete’s foot can develop into blisters or ulcers. You may even mistake it for eczema or simple dry skin.
Those most at risk of athlete’s foot are men who frequently wear damp, sweaty socks and tight shoes. If you spend time in public areas like locker rooms and saunas, you’re at greater risk, too.
Treatment is important because the infection can spread to the broader part of your foot, to your other foot, and to your hands, especially if you tend to pick and scratch the affected area.
If you aren’t sure whether your scaly skin is athlete’s foot, you can make an appointment at our office for confirmation.
Treat it at home
Athlete’s foot is in the same family as other topical fungal infections like jock itch. Over-the-counter antifungal medications are effective, especially if you treat everything that your feet come into contact with – shoes, socks, towels, etc.
Seek professional help
If over-the-counter treatments don’t work after two weeks or your athlete’s foot continues to spread, even with treatment, it’s time to make an appointment with a podiatrist, like those at Go Feet. We can offer prescription medications to wipe out the infection and bring you relief. These medications may be topical, applied directly to the fungal infection, or in severe cases, oral.
Do seek a doctor’s help right away if you have diabetes. You can easily develop a secondary bacterial infection characterized by excessive redness, swelling, and fever.
Keep your feet to yourself
Athlete’s foot is highly contagious. You may have even picked it up in a public shower or pool deck. It can be spread via contaminated towels and clothing. So don’t share your shoes, socks, or towels. Wear flip flops when in public, wet areas.
If you’re prone to athlete’s foot, keep your feet dry – especially between your toes. Alternate shoes so they can dry between uses, and use an antifungal powder on your feet daily. If your feet get sweaty easily, change your socks often.
Athlete’s foot can usually be resolved with at-home treatments, but if your case seems severe or persistent, it’s time to contact a professional. Call Go Feet for all your foot and ankle concerns, or use the online tool to schedule.