Beware! Athlete’s Foot isn’t Just for Athletes!

I do believe that everyone has a part of the body you prefer the most. It could be the one you find beautiful with you or for you. It could be the one you think does no harm to you or keeps you away from danger. It could be the one you really use often.

It might sound weird for some, but it’s not impossible that some people love their feet!

Well, how could you not love it? It does all things with and for you, and it lets you go wherever you please without even complaining.

Yes, your feet are among the most used and most useful parts of you, and you surely just hate it whenever it’s not in the right condition because it affects your performance and your lifestyle in many ways. They might be the toughest parts your body has, yet it also experiences some unwanted problems. One of the most common and popular of these problems is the Athlete’s Foot.

athletes foot

What is Athlete’s foot?

Athlete’s Foot is a transferable infection on the foot’s skin caused by fungus called tinea fungus. It is a fungal infection that begins between your toes. You can get the infection when your feet come in contact with the fungus. Not until that happens, your feet are safe from it. While it is true that Athlete’s Foot is commonly experienced by athletes than by those who aren’t, it doesn’t denote exemption of anyone. Athlete or not, you also stand the chance of having Athlete’s Foot if you get exposed to the fungus that leads to it.

The painful thing is if not properly treated, it could affect your toenails and worst, your hands too.

How can I contract the fungus?

Again, for you to acquire Athlete’s Foot, contact with the tinea fungus is the key. For you to know what activities or areas to be careful with, you need to know where this fungus inhabits.

Tinea fungus develops in environments and surfaces which are warm, damp and dark. Areas where a lot of feet get directly in contact to are risky places. Examples are showers (especially public ones), swimming pools and locker rooms. Sometimes, people think that the place is wet with pool water or it doesn’t actually matter at all since everybody is wet, but what a surprise that it hides a harm the naked eyes can’t see.

The most obvious way to get the fungus is to directly touch the dirty floor with your feet. Public comfort rooms and places house a lot of dirt on the floor, and that’s for sure. If you go barefoot, you’ll immediately feel that it’s not the best thing to do since it really isn’t. Letting your feet be wet for a long time or sweaty can also be a way to acquire the fungus since it thrives in moist areas. Since Athlete’s Foot is communicable, you can obtain it through using someone else’s (specifically an infected’s) hygiene stuff.

How would I know if I have this infection?

  • Patches on your feet, most especially those between the toes begin to appear.
  • The part becomes red skinned and eventually turns really itchy and wet.
  • Inflamed and swollen feeling of the feet’s skin.
  • Blisters develop.
  • Your skin cracks and comes off; it may also bleed.
  • Discoloration and detachment and dislocation of toenails happen.
  • Infected skin may thicken and become white or yellow.
  • In worst cases, the infection spreads out in and on the feet which will lead to unpleasant smell and pus discharge.

If you notice your feet having the ones mentioned or at least similar to them, then you might need to take action. 

How can I prevent myself from getting this infection? 

No one actually wants to get to the treatment part since that just means you’ve gotten Athlete’s Foot, so surely, you want to know how to not have it in the first place. Actually they’re just common things, but that what makes them shocking .Some of these preventive measures may include

  • Tinea fungus can be acquired from wet floor areas like shower and comfort rooms, and you cannot stop neither yourself nor others from going in there because they’re necessities; so what you got to do is to make the most out of what you have. That means you need to maintain the cleanliness of these wet areas where people go barefooted. Remind others who use the specific areas to do the same thing.
  • Put on your footwear — especially on wet floors and public shower, locker and comfort rooms. You shouldn’t be lazy with this because the cost after is greater than what it requires you to do. Waterproof ones are ideal so they won’t swamp your feet.
  • Wearing proper socks and shoes is a good idea, but make sure to give your feet some ample time to take air. When your at home and whenever/wherever possible remove your shoes/slippers, and make your feet breathe.
  • Apply anti-fungal foot powder daily. Aside from its chemical contents, it can reduce rubbing and sweating too.
  • Wash your feet with clean personal stuff, and don’t forget to dry them thoroughly.
  • Shift between two or more pairs of shoes everyday. Your shoes must allow proper air flow.
  • Sharing is caring, but it depends on the situation. Don’t share slippers or shoes and even towels. You might not know the owner of the slippers you’ve borrowed has Athlete’s Foot or any other infection. Love your neighbor while staying hygienic.

What you should do if you already have it

For some who already have Athlete’s Foot, they turn out to be so embarrassed and shy about themselves. It lowers their self confidence because they themselves hate how they feel and how their feet exists. If you already got Athlete’s Foot, first is you have to accept that fact and then do something to kill that fact.

Initially, consider the easiest and most basic of all the things you can do — maintain proper feet hygiene. Keep them clean always, and dry them well. This is highly recommended for early  stages and for mild cases of Athlete’s Foot. For more serious ones, there are antibiotics, anti-fungal creams and medications which you can purchase over the counter or as prescribed by your doctor. Unless the suggested application time ended, don’t stop your usage of the effective medication or the advised one even after the skin seems healed already. Some people encounter bigger damages due to unfinished treatment period.

Among the many feet problems one might encounter, Athlete’s Foot is one of the names that ring a loud bell, first because of its unique and interesting name, and second, because it’s common.

Just like acquiring other feet problems, having athlete’s foot can affect one person in many ways. Like previously mentioned, confidence and self-appreciation might be affected. Physical appearance and health are both at risk too, and also your freedom and enjoyment to choose and wear any shoe type and style are both hampered.

Take care of your feet and do well, because whether or not you’re an athlete, Athlete’s Foot might be on your way – literally.

About the Author

Nicole Ann Pore is a daytime writer for Geniale, a holistic Medical Aesthetics and Skin Cancer Centre that aims to provide brilliant experience, treatment and result to its guests. Nicole graduated Cum Laude from De La Salle University Manila, Philippines with a Bachelor’s Degree in Communication Arts .