At any one time in the United States, up to 25% of the population suffers from athlete’s foot, a fungal infection that can prove uncomfortable, especially if left untreated. The experienced podiatric team at Cortez Foot & Ankle Specialists can properly diagnose and treat athlete's foot and help provide relief for your symptoms. They have three convenient offices in University Park, Ellenton, and Bradenton, Florida. Call the office nearest to you or request a consultation online with the team today.
Athlete’s foot is a fungal infection. It starts between your toes when your feet sweat while wearing tight-fitting shoes. Athlete’s foot also results from exposure to damp surfaces that those already infected have come into contact with, including public showers, swimming pools, and locker room floors.
Symptoms of athlete's foot range from somewhat annoying to extremely uncomfortable. Signs of athlete’s foot include:
It’s also a good idea to look out for a rash between your toes that itches, especially right after you remove your shoes and socks. That itchy rash is one of the primary indications of athlete’s foot.
Your doctor at Cortez Foot & Ankle Specialists diagnoses your athlete’s foot by doing a physical exam of your rash. You may have a sample taken from the infected area to be examined under a microscope. That exam will confirm a diagnosis and rule out other conditions. A small biopsy of the infected area can be sent to a lab for further testing.
For mild cases of athlete’s foot, the Cortez Foot & Ankle Specialists team recommends using over-the-counter antifungal medication.
For more severe cases, Cortez Foot & Ankle Specialists prescribes ointments, lotions, powders, or sprays. Several oral drugs can also help the more severe cases of athlete’s foot.
Regardless of the type of medication used, your feet should begin to feel better in a few days. However, it often takes up to a month for the medicine to get rid of your athlete's foot entirely.
Several actions can help reduce your chances of getting athlete’s foot. These include:
Whether you’re poolside, in the locker room, or using the shower at the gym, water shoes and flip flops help protect your feet from exposure to the fungus that causes athlete’s foot.
Alternating your shoes gives each pair a chance to dry between uses.
Socks, especially those made out of cotton, help absorb moisture. It’s also good to change your socks more than once a day.
Let your feet air dry whenever possible and give them, and your shoes, a break when you’re relaxing at home.
If your feet itch from athlete’s foot, call the Cortez Foot & Ankle Specialists office nearest to you or request an appointment online.