Athlete’s Foot or foot fungus is a skin disease caused by a fungus and it usually occurs between the toes and on soles of the foot and most often leaves a bad smell. The fungus that causes Athlete’s Foot is called Trichophyton. When the feet, or other areas of the body, stay moist, warm and irritated, this fungus can thrive and infect the upper layer of the skin. Up to 70% of the population will have Athlete’s Foot at some time during their lives.
Athlete’s Foot is caused by the Ringworm fungus (“tinea” in medical jargon). Athlete’s Foot is also called tineapedis. The fungus most commonly attacks the feet because shoes create a warm, dark, and humid environment which encourages fungus growth. If left untreated the condition can spread to other parts of the foot, hands and can even affect the face. People with excessively sweaty feet are more prone to this condition.
This condition can cause a great deal of discomfort and can affect an individual’s quality of life. The skin involved may be red, swollen and may contain sticky fluid. You may also experience a scaly dry rash on the bottom and sides of feet. This type of Athlete’s Foot is called a “moccasin” pattern. Cracks or “fissures” can occur between the toes, sometimes with an accompanied soft white scale.
The warmth and dampness of areas around swimming pools, showers, and locker rooms are also breeding grounds for fungi. Because the infection was common among athletes who used these facilities frequently, the term “Athlete’s Foot” became popular. For short periods of time, the fungus can live in warm puddles on the tile floor, awaiting another foot to hop onto.
Many people have the fungus present on their skin but are unaffected by the microscopic organism. Conditions such as bruising or cracks in the skin allow entry for the fungus and ultimately causes infection.
Athlete’s Foot is extremely common, and in almost all cases there is no underlying problem that led to your contracting this infection. However, fungal infections can also be an early sign of more serious problems that result in a weakened immune system. This is especially true for individuals who are at risk for developing diabetes or contracting the HIV virus. If someone in your family has diabetes, or if you are at-risk for HIV (high-risk sexual activity, needle sharing), then you should see your doctor to confirm that these are not potential underlying disorders.
Not all foot fungus conditions are Athlete’s Foot. Other conditions, such as disturbances of the sweat mechanism, reaction to dyes or adhesives in shoes, Eczema, and Psoriasis, may mimic the appearance of Athlete’s Foot Fungus.
When the skin is injured by the fungus, bacteria can also invade the skin. These bacteria can cause a bad smell. Bacterial infection of the skin and resulting inflammation is known as cellulites. This is especially likely to occur in the elderly, individuals with diabetes, chronic leg swelling, or who have had veins removed (such as for heart bypass surgery), and patients with impaired immune systems.
The most common signs of Athlete’s Foot are dry skin, itching, scaling, inflammation, burning and stinging sensations and also blisters. Blisters most often lead to cracking of the skin and secondary infections. When blisters break, small raw areas of tissue are exposed, causing pain, burning and swelling. Itching and burning usually increases as the infection spreads.
It’s very common for Athlete’s Foot to spread to the soles of the feet, between the toes and to the toenails. Athlete’s Foot is very contagious and it can spread to other people or other parts of the body. The most common areas to spread are the groin and underarms by those who scratch the infection and then touch themselves elsewhere. It’s important to keep your finger nails sanitized and fungus free because your finger nails are your most common carrier of the fungus. Imagine yourself sleeping and feeling an itch, your first reaction will be to scratch yourself and never realize you will scratch yourself in another place later.
The fungus causing Athlete’s Foot may persist for long periods of time and it only gets worse if not attended to. A fungal infection does not just go away and it’s important to use fungal products that work the first time and eliminates the fungus right away so it does not come back. The use of oral medication can take weeks or months to get rid of the fungus. DermaTechRx™ suggests you use anti-fungal creams and body washes to remove the fungus right away and stop the spreading.
The infection may be spread by contaminated bed sheets or clothing to other parts of the body. It’s important to sleep on clean sheets and to never wear the same pair of socks twice. Recontamination will result in never getting rid of the fungus.
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Preventing Athlete’s Foot is not easy because it is usually contracted in dressing rooms, showers, and swimming pool locker rooms where bare feet come in contact with the fungus. However, you can do much to prevent infection by practicing good foot hygiene. Daily washing of the feet with Antimicrobial washes and gels to arrest the fungus instantly; drying carefully, especially between the toes; and spraying your shoes daily with an antimicrobial disinfectant (used in hospital surgery rooms), help prevent the fungus from infecting the feet. Also helpful is daily use of a quality foot fungal powder.
- Avoid walking barefoot, use shower shoes or flip flops.
- Reduce perspiration by using a fungal powder
- Wear light and airy shoes
- Wear socks that keep your feet dry, and change them frequently if you perspire heavily
- Disinfect your shoes daily before putting them on and if possible, put them out in the sun to dry
- Pay attention to your feet and look for obvious signs such as changes in color and temperature, thick or discolored nails, and check for cracks, cuts, peeling or scaling on the soles of your feet
- Be careful when self-medicating. More is not always better. Be careful to use the products the way they are intended
- Always finish the full course of medication as fungus lives for days even after the symptoms have disappeared
- Put your socks on before your underwear. This will prevent the infection from spreading to the groin area which may cause Jock Itch
- Launder clothes in soapy HOT water with bleach to combat fungal organisms
- Wear wider, roomier shoes for day to day activities to allow air circulation. Leather shoes or sandals are preferred
- Wear sandals or thongs when in public pools or showers or as often as possible
- Allow shoes to dry before wearing again
- Wash your feet at the end of the day and wash your feet during that day
- Wear cotton socks to absorb sweat, changing twice daily if you are susceptible
Treatment of Athlete’s Foot – Kicking it to the Curb,
So you can get Back on your Feet!
If you’ve tried other treatments and still intensively seek a great, fast cure for Athlete’s Foot, then seek no further. AllStop™ brand of products for the tackles the itching, burning, and cracking feet caused by Athlete’s Foot fungus. Visit All Stop’s website for brand information or the All Stop News page for more in-depth information on Athlete’s Foot. Our goal was that the products must work quickly, safely and be highly effective, and we’re proud to say, after years of research and testing, we’ve accomplished that goal.
Below is compiled a complete Athlete’s Foot treatment regimen that requires following the steps below, then repeating again, daily, to break the Athlete’s Foot fungus life-cycle and prevent re-infestation. It is the only proven non-toxic way on how to get rid of Athlete’s foot.
Athlete’s Foot Treatment Regimen
- Once a day, dilute All Stop™ Medicated Body Wash 4 ounces to a gallon of very warm water and soak your feet for about 20 minutes. For more severe cases, apply Medicated Body Wash full-strength to feet and let soak for 15 minutes. Use a soft foot brush to brush your feet and specifically under and around your toe nails or finger nails.
- Immediately following, towel dry and apply All Stop™ Healing Gel to entire feet, paying close attention to the active areas. This will assure a sterile environment for your feet. Allow to air dry – do not rinse.
- Approximately 12 hours later apply All Stop™ Medicated Skin Cream to your feet and toes.
- Spray the insides of your shoes with PuraCleenRx™ Disinfectant Spray and allow to dry before wearing them to create a sterile environment for your feet. This will eliminate recontamination and allows your feet to treat quickly.
- Athlete’s Foot fungus can thrive in your environment, off of your body and even reinfect you or others if not treated promptly. Use Disinfectant Spray on areas feet may come into contact with such as floors, bath tubs, shower stalls, sheets, etc. in order to treat the fungus in these areas.
- For more severe cases of Athlete’s Foot, continue treatment by using both the Healing Gel and the Medicated Skin Cream twice a day. Make sure to alternate use of the products and allow 4-6 hours between applications. EXAMPLE: (using 4 hour rotations) 8:00am – Healing Gel / 12:00pm – Medicated Skin Cream / 4:00pm – Healing Gel / 8:00pm Medicated Skin Cream (or visa versa)
Continue this regimen daily until all signs of Athlete’s Foot or Nail Fungus are gone.
Delcambre High School and many others are proud sponsors on the fight on fungal issues.