There Is A Wide Range Of Options With Varying Success Rates
Other than keeping your toenails trimmed and perhaps painted, you may not pay much attention to them unless a problem develops. Healthy toenails are pink, shiny and smooth, but a fungal infection can cause them to become discolored, thick, brittle and even painful.
Toenail fungal infection, known as onychomycosis, is a common but challenging condition toenail fungus treatments include a wide range of options with varying success rates.
Causes of toenail fungus
Fungal nail infections are usually caused by fungi called dermatophytes that infect the skin beneath the nail yeast is another common culprit. Toenails are especially vulnerable to infection when your bare feet contact damp surfaces such as showers, swimming pools and locker rooms. If you have athletes foot, the infection can spread to the nails.
Wearing closed shoes such as athletic shoes for extended periods also can contribute to infection if your shoes and/or socks are damp from perspiration or heat. Moreover, if your shoes fit snugly enough to put pressure on your toes, they can damage the nail bed, making it more susceptible to infection.
People with chronic diseases, such as diabetes or circulatory problems, also may be more prone to toenail infections.
Symptoms of toenail fungus
Toenail fungus symptoms can develop slowly over time and may go unnoticed at first. Symptoms can include:
Toenail fungus treatments
When to see a doctor for toenail fungus
Preventing toenail fungus
Signs Of Athletes Foot
I was young and naive and didnt know much about fungal infections. I just thought my feet were uncontrollably itchy for no reason. Until a rash started to develop and before I knew it all my toes were scaly and peeling.
Some signs that you may have athletes foot is the following:
- Itching, burning, and stinging in between your toes or on the soles of your feet
- Itchy blisters on your feet
- Cracking and peeling on your feet
- Dry skin on the sides or soles of your feet
- Raw skin on your feet
- Toenail fungus
- Crumbly, brittle, and discolored toenails
Here is what my feet looked like at their worse
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Additional Tips To Get Rid Of Foot Fungus:
- Wear a waterproof and clean pair of flip flop in the moist areas.
- Clean your foot with soapy water before going to bed.
- Always keep your foot clean and dry.
- Do not walk barefoot in the common areas.
- Do not take any beauty treatment until the symptoms are gone completely.
- Avoid prolonged exposure to the moisture and dampness.
- Avoid heat environment that will generate sweating.
- Wear loose and open-toed shoes.
- Maintain a healthy diet to strengthen your immune system.
All these home remedies are effective and can help you to get rid of the foot fungus within a couple of weeks. But if the symptoms persist more than fifteen days, it is better to take a medical help to cure the foot fungus. Otherwise, it can be more irritating and infectious.
Also Check: How To Know If You Have Fungus On Toenail
Why Do People Get Athletes Foot
Athletes foot is caused by an infection with skin fungi, also known as dermatophytes. They are a type of fungus that everyone has, just as we have many other fungi and bacteria in the body and on the skin. This fungus is normally harmless. It lives on dead skin cells and does not cause damage. It is only when conditions for fungal growth suddenly become far too favourable that the fungi begin to reproduce faster than usual, and then attack skin or nails.
The fungi penetrate into the outer layer of skin, causing the skin to form more cells than usual. When these cells are pushed up to the surface, the skin becomes thick and scaly. A red edge can often be seen between the normal skin and the diseased skin. The clear boundary between affected and the normal skin is often seen with fungal infections of the skin generally, also in other places besides the feet.
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Which Treatments Are Available For Athletes Foot
Medicines for athletes foot come in a variety of forms, including sprays, creams and powders. These contain an anti-fungal ingredient and are available over the counter. Wash and dry your feet carefully before applying the product and apply a small amount, completely covering the affected area and surrounding skin. Make sure you read the information on the packaging and the leaflet inside for instructions on using the product.
If you think you may be having an allergic reaction to the treatment, stop applying the product immediately and seek advice from your GP as soon as possible.
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Think You Have Athletes Foot Heres How To Treat It And Avoid More Serious Problems
Perhaps the skin in between your toes is itchy. Or the skin on the sides of your feet is flaking and irritated.
These are classic signs of athletes foot. Doctors call it tinea pedis and its a common fungal infection, affecting 15 to 25 percent of people at any one time.
Its flaky dead skin overlying redness, says Adam Friedman, a dermatologist at George Washington University School of Medicine and Health Sciences. Skin between the toes may look white and soggy, the soles of the foot are more likely to be dry and flaky, and reddening and blistering can appear anywhere.
Still it might be something else psoriasis and eczema can look a lot like athletes foot.
So how can you be sure you have athletes foot? Do you need to see a doctor for diagnosis and treatment?
Most people want to treat athletes foot, says Shari Lipner, a dermatologist at Weill Cornell Medicine in New York. Even when the itching and burning symptoms are very mild, the condition is unsightly. Also, the fungus can invade the nail and nail fungus is much harder to treat, Lipner says.
But you dont necessarily need to see a doctor. Its okay to try an over-the-counter product on your own. Look for those that contain an antifungal medication such as terbinafine , clotrimazole , tolnaftate , miconazole , or undecylenic acid . Other products, such as those containing tea tree oil or natural salts, have little evidence to back their use, Lipner says.
Avoid Waiting To Treat Toenail Fungus Or Athletes Foot
Although foot fungal infections may not appear to be bothersome, leaving the condition untreated will become irritable. If you continue to ignore the problem, the complications can become much more severe.
- The tinea fungi group is contagious and spreads quickly. Athletes foot can spread to the toenails and cause onychomycosis. The more fungi are encouraged to thrive, the more difficult it becomes to treat.
This is particularly the case for toenail fungus that has taken hold under the toenail. Once nails become infected, it can take up to 18 months for the infected toenail to grow out.
Furthermore, patients have to continuously treat the infection with a cream or drug that stifles the growth. If you neglect to treat a foot fungal infection, it will continue to spread, even after it may appear to have cleared up.
In general, fungal infections only cause minor irritations. The may also make your toenails and feet appear unsightly, which can be embarrassing for some people. You will probably also suffer from smelly feet which can also lead to embarrassing situations.
Some people will also suffer from pain in the feet and toenails. If you reach this point, you should seriously consider consulting a doctor or podiatrist to find a suitable treatment.
The longer you ignore the problem, the worse it will get. And that could mean needing more expensive treatment. There is also a potentially increased risk of contracting other health issues.
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Best Antifungal Cream For Foot Fungus
Are you particular about your foot care? Do you think you take precautions to ensure that your health is good and effective? You know there are different types of health problems that should be taken into consideration. For example, you must take antifungal cream for foot fungus.
If you have fungus in your foot, make sure to start using the best antifungal foot cream. There is no point in avoiding it. What is the point if fungal is getting all over the place? Well, it is widespread to get a fungal infection on your toes or feet. Most fungal infections are triggered by dermatophytes, an ailment-causing fungus that rises on body surfaces like hair, skin, and nails.
Talking about athletes foot, the most prevalent foot fungus flourishes in sweaty, warm places like the insides of the athletic shoes that are how it got its name. However, foot fungus can grow in various environments, natural and artificial, as long as there is so much moisture where fungi can increase. These include shared areas at the pools or gyms, soil, grass, or even shared items like socks, shoes, or towels from household members undergoing infection.
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Faq About Athletes Foot
What does athletes foot look like?
Athletes foot is first felt as itching, stinging and a burning sensation in the skin between the toes, which will often become red and slightly scaly. Watery blisters may also appear.
What is athletes foot?
Athletes foot is a very common fungal infection, which attacks the skin between the toes. It normally starts between the outer toes , and from there it spreads to the other toes and possibly to the rest of the foot.
What causes athletes foot?
Athletes foot is caused by an infection with skin fungi, also known as dermatophytes. It is a type of fungus, which we all have on our bodies, and which is normally harmless. It is only when conditions for fungus growth suddenly become far too favourable that the fungi begin to reproduce faster than usual, and will then attack skin or nails.
How long is athletes foot contagious?
Athletes foot is contagious as long as you have it. That is why you must get it treated as soon as possible, so that you do not pass it on to others or infect other parts of your body, such as the toenails, where you can also get nail fungus.
Can you use pickling preservative Atamon to combat athletes foot?
How should you treat athletes foot?
Does athletes foot clear up by itself?
Can athletes foot spread to other parts of the body?
If you have any further questions on this subject, we recommend that you contact your doctor.
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Prevention Is The Best Treatment
Keep your feet clean and dry. Heres how:
- Wash feet with soap and water daily.
- Change socks daily or twice a day if feet sweat a lot.
- Wear socks that absorb moisture. Cotton is best avoid wearing synthetic materials for extended periods.
- Dry feet thoroughly after a bath or shower use a hair dryer if necessary.
- Sprinkle talcum powder to absorb moisture.
- Wash socks and towels in hot water.
- Let feet breathe. Wear open shoes or sandals when possible.
- Dont go barefoot in public showers or near swimming pools or hot tubs.
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How To Prevent Both Foot And Toenail Fungus
While toenail fungus and foot fungus arent the same condition, the following tips can help you prevent both, says Sundling:
- Practice good hygiene, such as keeping your feet clean.
- Alternate your shoes during the week. Your feet sweat all day long. Alternating your shoes allows them to dry out, so the fungus cant survive.
- Wear moisture-wicking socks that help dry out shoes and kill fungus. You can find these at running stores and athletic stores. If your socks are exceptionally sweaty, changing them more than once per day can help.
- Wear shoes in public places like locker rooms, pools, and gyms to limit exposure to fungus.
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Who Is At Risk Of Getting A Fungal Nail Infection
Fungal nail infections can affect anyone as they are very contagious but are most prevalent in older individuals. You are more likely to develop fungal nail if you are over the age of 60. Gender also plays a role, with men three times more likely to have a fungal nail infection than women.
Other risk factors include:
Diseases that cause poor blood circulation
A weakened immune system
What Can You Do Yourself To Prevent Athletes Foot
It is important to treat athletes foot if you have caught it. However, it is at least as important to prevent athletes foot altogether.
Cleanliness and good hygiene are important in preventing athletes foot, but even if you are careful about hygiene, you can still catch athletes foot, because it is so contagious. However, you can minimise the risk by observing some simple rules and precautions.
Good advice to prevent athletes foot:
- Make sure you dry your feet well, especially between the toes, after you take a bath.
- Change your shoes frequently.
- If possible, replace footwear in artificial materials with leather footwear, which allows your skin to breathe better.
- Let your feet get some fresh air as often as possible wear sandals whenever you can.
- Change your socks every day and replace synthetic socks with woollen or cotton socks.
- Always keep your feet clean and dry.
- Wash socks, bed linen, towels and other items at a temperature of at least 60 degrees C, or the fungal spores will not be killed.
- If you have athletes foot, dry your feet last and then put the towel in the laundry basket.
How Can You Treat Athletes Foot
There are many noninfective conditions that affect the foot, such as psoriasis and poison ivy. If you are unsure whether your problem is athletes foot , you should visit a physician. Your pharmacist may also be able to recognize the presence of athletes foot. Once athletes foot is confirmed, you may treat the problem with nonprescription products. Generally, OTC products are safer than prescription products, as they have fewer side effects. Used properly, nonprescription products may also cure athletes foot.
Your pharmacist can provide full counseling information on treatment options for athletes foot. You must read the labels carefully and follow all directions provided. Some products can be used in anyone aged 2 years and above, but they must be used twice daily for 4 weeks to produce a cure.
Another product must only be used in those aged 12 years and above, but it can cure athletes foot between the toes in 1 week if used twice daily or in 4 weeks if you choose to use it only once daily. However, it will not cure athletes foot on the bottom or sides of the feet, which is known as moccasin type.
Lamisil AT Cream can also cure athletes foot in those aged 12 years and above. The spray pump and solution forms only cure the condition between the toes if used twice daily for 1 week, but the cream can also cure the infection on the bottom and sides of the feet when used twice daily for 2 weeks.
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