With the start of the New Year, a lot of people will be joining the gym and not realize that their newest gym buddy might be Athlete’s Foot. The most common signs of Athlete’s Foot are itchy, peeling feet. At Hollowbrook Foot Specialists in Wappingers Falls, NY, we notice an increase in athletes foot at this time of year. Here are some common questions that our patients ask:
What is Athlete’s Foot?
Athlete’s Foot is a contagious fungal infection that grows on or in the top layer of skin. It can be itchy and/or cause blisters, and it makes your skin look scaly or flaky. It is sometimes called moccasin foot (in this type, the rash covers your foot the same way that a moccasin shoe would) or ringworm of the foot.
Here is a picture of how Athlete’s foot commonly looks:
Who can get Athlete’s Foot?
People who’s feet sweat a lot are more likely to get Athlete’s foot. However, Athlete’s foot can affect anyone; even people who are not athletes!
How do you get Athlete’s Foot?
The fungus that causes Athlete’s Foot likes to live in warm moist environments such as the floor of the gym locker rooms, showers, dressing rooms, or at public pools. The fungus gets on your feet when you walk barefoot, and when you put your shoes on, it grows and multiplies, causing the infection.
What are the symptoms of Athlete’s Foot?
There are different types of Athlete’s Foot, and your symptoms may include one or more of the following:
- Cracked, scaly, peeling skin in between your toes
- Itching and peeling
- Several sudden fluid filled blisters under the skin, usually on the bottom of the foot
Can I treat my Athlete’s Foot at home?
If you think you have an Athlete’s Foot infection, you can try 2 weeks of at home care. Make sure you clean your feet daily with mild soap and warm water, and dry thoroughly, especially between the toes. Make sure you are using a separate towel for your feet, and change it frequently, along with your socks and bed sheets.
When do I need to see my Podiatrist for my Athlete’s Foot?
If you do not see any improvement in your feet after following the above instructions, it is time to see your Podiatrist. Some cases of Athlete’s Foot are very difficult to treat and get rid of, and can spread to other parts of your body easily including your toenails, armpits, and groin. If left untreated, some cases of Athlete’s Foot can get infected with bacteria, causing an even bigger problem.
Don’t ignore Athlete’s Foot. Request an appointment online with Dr. Schlam at Hollowbrook Foot Specialists in Wappingers Falls, NY or by phone at (845) 298-9074.
By David Schlam