Athlete's Foot

Athlete's Foot

Athlete's foot is a fungal infection of the foot that causes an incredibly annoying itching sensation between the toes.

Symptoms

  • Rash between the toes
  • Cracked skin
  • Burning or stinging skin
  • Red, scaly, flaky or dry skin
  • Blisters which may crust or ooze
  • Scaling around the sole & side of foot

What causes Athlete's Foot?

Harmless bacteria and fungi live naturally on our skin mopping up dead skin cells. One group called dermatophytes sometimes multiplies on or within the top layer of skin on our feet leading to Athlete's foot.

The fungi love the dark, warm, humid environment that our feet provide and happily multiply, spreading easily from person to person through contaminated clothing, towels and floors. Showers, swimming pools and changing rooms are all places where you risk contracting Athlete's foot.

People who wear tight-fitting trainers or who don't dry their feet well are at particular risk.

How to treat Athlete's Foot

  • Athlete's foot is rarely serious. It can be tackled by washing the feet daily and drying them thoroughly before putting on shoes.
  • An antifungal cream, spray, liquid or powder can be used to treat the condition - these are available without the need for a prescription and generally work within two weeks. If after that time the athlete's foot has not started to improve, a doctor can prescribe stronger medication.

Alternative Remedies & Self-help

  • Socks and shoes made from synthetic materials should be avoided as they don't allow for good airflow.
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