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853 Jefferson Ave
Washington, PA, 15301

Podiatrist - Washington
853 Jefferson Ave
Washington, PA 15301
(724) 225-7410
(724) 225-9469 - fax

Do you have red, itchy feet?

Athlete’s foot is actually a fungal infection of the foot that typically develops between your toes. It is also known as “tinea pedis” and is a foot condition that may not only be unsightly to look at but also quite painful as well.

What Causes Athlete’s Foot?

Athlete’s foot is the most common type of fungal infection Dr. Phil Pinsker treats at his Washington, PA, podiatric office. It develops when a certain fungus grows on the skin of your feet. This mold-like fungus actually already lives on your skin but never becomes a problem when feet stay clean and dry. The fungus thrives where it is damp and closed so Athlete’s foot develops when your feet provide the fungus with that perfect environment.

Athlete’s foot can develop when you wear tight shoes that squish your toes. This can create a warm, moist area between your toes. Shoes in general can create a warm, damp environment due to the fact that your feet normally sweat. Wearing closed shoes for extended periods of time, especially if they are lined with plastic will create a breeding ground for the fungus to thrive. If your feet sweat a lot and you don’t change your socks and shoes everyday, you are keeping your feet in a perpetual damp environment and inviting the fungus to grow.

Athlete’s foot is also contagious. Because of this, you are at risk for contracting the fungus in environments that are moist and warm. Sharing shoes and socks with an infected person or walking barefoot around pools, showers and locker room areas may put you at risk for getting athlete’s foot.

What Are the Symptoms of Athlete’s Foot?

When diagnosing athlete’s foot, some of the common symptoms experienced include:

  • Redness
  • Scaling
  • Inflammation
  • Itching
  • Stinging
  • Burning
  • Blisters that ooze
  • Nails that are thick and discolored

How is Athlete’s Foot Treated?

There are several treatment options that Dr. Pinkser can offer depending on the severity of the infection. Treating a case of athlete’s foot might include one or more of the following:

  • Self-care – This includes washing feet twice a day, keeping feet dry and clean, wearing clean cotton socks and changing shoes daily.
  • Fungicidal chemicals
  • Over-the-counter antifungal powder
  • Prescription topical or oral antifungal medication
  • Antibiotics if there is an accompanying bacterial infection

Athlete’s foot can be mild or severe and be persistent and recurring if you do not observe proper treatment methods. Having a case of athlete’s foot puts you at risk for secondary bacterial infections, which can break down the tissue between your toes. This would lead to red, eroded and painful skin. There have also been cases where athlete’s foot has led to allergic reactions that resulted in painful blisters on fingers, hands and toes.

What Can I Do To Prevent Athlete’s Foot?

There are numerous things that you can do to ensure that your feet stay clear of an infection such as athlete’s foot. Some of the tips Dr. Pinsker encourages his patients with include:

  • Wear shoes that allow your feet to breathe and alternate shoes each day.
  • Change socks often to keep feet dry
  • Always wear sandals around pools or public locker and shower areas
  • After swimming or bathing, dry feet thoroughly, especially between toes.
  • Use an antifungal powder on your feet daily

Keep a close watch on your feet if you are susceptible to infections such as athlete’s foot. When symptoms arise, do not wait to seek treatment, especially if you have diabetes. If you have a stubborn case of Athlete’s foot, we can provide the treatment you need to get your feet back to being healthy again. Make an appointment with Dr. Pinsker by calling our podiatric office at (724) 225-7410 or directly from our homepage.