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Athlete’s Foot: Everything You Need to Know

What is Athlete's Foot?

Athlete’s foot, also known as tinea pedis, is a common fungal infection that affects the skin on the feet. It can usually be treated with over-the-counter creams, powders or sprays.

Symptoms of Athlete's Foot

It’s important to note that not everyone will experience all symptoms of athlete’s foot and some may only have mild ones.

With that in mind, here are some of the most common symptoms:

  • Itchy white patches between your toes
  • Dry, scaly, and cracked skin
  • Burning or stinging sensation
  • Fluid-filled blisters

Causes of Athlete’s Foot

The primary cause of athlete’s foot is a group of fungi called dermatophytes, which thrive in warm, moist environments. These fungi can be found on various surfaces such as in changing rooms, swimming pools and shower floors, and can be easily transmitted to the skin on your feet through direct contact.

Other factors that can increase the risk of developing athlete’s foot include:

  • Wearing tight-fitting or non-breathable shoes
  • Sweating excessively
  • Walking barefoot in communal spaces
  • Having a weakened immune system
  • Having a history of skin conditions, such as eczema or psoriasis

Tips to Alleviate Symptoms

While antifungal medications are the most common and effective treatment for athlete’s foot, there are several measures you can take to alleviate symptoms and prevent the infection from spreading without medication. These include: 

  • Keep your feet clean & dry: Wash your feet daily with soap and water, and dry them thoroughly, especially between the toes

  • Wear well-ventilated footwear: Opt for shoes made from breathable materials such as leather or mesh that allow air to circulate

  • Change socks regularly: Change your socks at least once a day, or more if your feet get really sweaty

  • Alternate your shoes: Don’t wear the same pair of shoes for more than 2 days in a row – let them dry after each use

  • Take your shoes off at home: Allowing your feet to breathe will help keep them dry and prevent the growth of fungus

  • Wear footwear in public places: Don’t walk barefoot in areas that could be contaminated like changing rooms, or swimming pools

Treatments for Athlete’s Foot

While you can use the above tips to help ease the symptoms, and reduce your risk of developing athlete’s foot – it’s unlikely to get better on its own. But the good news is it can be easily treated with antifungal medicines that are available in your local pharmacy!

These come in a few different forms: 

  • Antifungal spray: it can be easily applied and targeted to specific areas on the skin

  • Antifungal powder: it can absorb moisture and keep the affected area dry, which can help prevent fungal growth

  • Antifungal cream: it can be more hydrating and can help soothe itching and inflammation associated with athlete’s foot

Get Better with Healthera

If you’re suffering from athlete’s foot, then chances are you don’t fancy putting on your shoes to walk to your local pharmacy.

Healthera has got you covered!

Simply click the button below to open your Healthera app, navigate to the Foot Care section of the Pharmacy Shop and get your antifungal medicine sent directly to your home.