Here’s a scenario: it’s the New Year, and you are finally making a resolution to start going to the gym more often, so you have signed yourself up for a new health club. The gym seems upscale enough, and in clean enough condition, so you walk the tiles and showers of the locker room without much thought for hygiene.
Then, a couple weeks later, you are met with an itchy, stinging feeling on your soles, and an unsightly, discoloured, cracking appearance between your toes. The discomfort, mixed with the embarrassment, is enough to derail your New Year’s plans to get fit.
Tinea Pedis, known colloquially as athlete’s foot, is not very much fun. It is fairly easily transmissible and can be enough of a nuisance that it keeps sufferers from being active. While it is true that anyone can catch it, there are certain steps you can take to avoid it.
In the interest of encouraging the public to learn about common foot conditions we here at Feet First Clinic have put together a short guide to athlete’s foot: what it is, how to avoid it, and what to do if you get it.
What Is Athlete’s Foot?
Athlete’s foot is a fungal infection caused by Dermatophytes – a type of fungi notorious for causing skin diseases in people and animals. It often thrives in moist environments, like gym floors, locker rooms, showers, or even inside very sweaty shoes. It is the nature of these breeding grounds that gives us the name athlete’s foot, although the term is ultimately a misnomer: anybody can get it.
How to Avoid Athlete’s Foot
The first and most obvious way to avoid athlete’s foot is to always maintain a barrier between your feet and the floor of public places, especially wet ones. If your feet have come in contact with a wet floor, do your best to clean them and then immediately dry them.
Also, have a couple different pairs of orthopedic footwear to work out in, alternating daily, and try wearing sweat-wicking socks. If you really want to stay safe, you can apply anti-fungal powder to your feet every day. For more information, feel free to contact your foot specialist in Toronto – we’re always here to help!
How to Treat Athlete’s Foot
If you exhibit the symptoms of athlete’s foot, don’t hesitate to book an appointment today with one of our chiropodists, who can assess and diagnose the condition. You might need a topical antifungal medication, in addition to observing thorough foot hygiene, or you may even try oral antifungals. It is possible for the condition to go away on its own, but proactive treatment is usually always recommended.
Don’t let something as small as a fungal spore mess up your New Year’s resolutions to stay active. Make sure to take all necessary precautions to avoid the condition, and if you do get athlete’s foot, visit our chiropodists as soon as possible to get you hitting the gym again in no time.