Shoes change with the seasons. As you switch from open sandals in the summer to more enclosed shoes in the fall, your feet will perspire more, and as the weather turns colder you may find yourself using a gym shower more often. On the other hand, warmer weather may mean more time at a public pool. Either way, you have a great recipe for developing athlete’s foot. If you notice the beginnings of a rash on your foot, call Drs. David Guhl and Amy-Miller Guhl. They can determine what type of infection it is and recommend the best way to get rid of it.
How Did I Get It?
The condition is caused by a fungus that thrives with moisture and lack of air. These fungi, called dermatophytes, live in your skin all the time, but are not usually a problem as long as your feet stay clean and dry. You come into contact with the fungus in places where an infected person has been, like showers, public pools, and pavement or floors. You may even get it by touching another person’s infected feet with yours. Any tiny break in your skin can let the fungus penetrate and start to grow. If your feet stay moist and can’t get air, the fungal infection thrives.
What Does It Look Like?
Athlete’s foot can occur in three forms. In a toe web Infection you will see scaly, peeling skin – usually between your 4th and 5th toes – and it may itch or give you a burning sensation. In moccasin type infections, it will show up as thickened, cracked skin on the sole of your foot, which can be a bit painful. A vesicular form of infection involves fluid filled blisters that form under your skin anywhere on your foot, although they are usually on the sole. This type could be worsened by a secondary bacterial infection added to the fungal one. All three forms will itch and you may have a burning or stinging pain.
What to Do for My Itchy Feet
If you are tired of the discomfort, unsightly rash, or dry, cracked skin on your feet associated with this fungal infection, the podiatrists at Waukesha Foot Specialists can recommend over-the-counter medications for your particular type of condition such as topical creams, lotions, powders, or sprays. If the symptoms don’t clear up in a few weeks, we may prescribe a stronger anti-fungal medication, or even an antibiotic. Some of the oral medications may have side effects or interact with other drugs, so it is important to tell us what medicines you are taking.
Most important is taking care of your feet every day. Wash them and dry them thoroughly – especially between your toes. Use any recommended creams or other methods of treatment exactly as directed. Change your socks and alternate the shoes you wear so your feet can stay as dry as possible. Remember to wear some sort of foot protection at all times when you are in public places that may harbor the fungus.
Even if you aren’t an athlete, and you religiously follow all of these recommendations, you may still end up getting athlete’s foot. Don’t despair or put up with the discomfort. Call us at (262) 544-0700 to get the relief you deserve. You can also schedule an appointment online with Drs. Amy Miller-Guhl and David Guhl. We want to help cure your foot problems!