Athlete’s Foot Symptoms and Remedies
Athlete foot or tinea pedis is a fungus on the feet, it starts between the fingers and then spreads really fast to the other parts of the foot. Athlete’s foot onset seems to be ordinary in the beginning but if left untreated it can become a major problem within the weeks.
Tinea Pedis is a term used to refer to a dermatophyte infection on the soles of the feet and the interdigital spaces.
Basically, it is a fungal infection of the foot that commonly starts between the toes, but can also be found on the palms, groin, back and chest.
This fungal infection can be a short or long-term infection, depending on the treatment and its effectiveness.
Many times athlete’s foot starts on the ankles, this is due to the extra tight socks elastic and wearing sweaty socks and footwear for a longer duration.
Athlete’s foot fungus thrives in moist and warm & dark environment, and shoes provides these ideal conditions
Common causes of Tinea pedis
Tinea Pedis occurs when a fungus grows on the skin of your feet. Commonly the first growth starts between the toes and spreads from there. Sometimes it starts from toe-finger nails.
Risk of contracting Athlete’s Foot increases if:
A person wears tightly closed shoes, especially if the inner lining of the shoes is made up of plastic
A person’s feet are constantly wet for a prolonged period of time
Sweat a lot (that’s why its called ATHLETE’S FOOT)
Any kind of cut or wound on the skin or nails of the foot.
Common symptoms of Foot Fungus
- Crackling, flaking and peeling of the side of the skin of the foot or between the toes.
- Red, itchy and inflamed skin
- Burning/stinging pain when touching the affected skin
- Blisters that ooze fluid and get crusty
- When the infection spreads to the nail, then the symptoms could be:
- Discoloration of nails
- The skin near the nails becomes thick and inflamed
- toenails that pull away from the nail bed
- Can even crumble
Peeling of skin in athlete’s foot
The top 3 common causes of peeling feet skin are either dryness, inflammation, or an infection, from a fungus,
Another big reason is the seasons and climate where you live, as hot and humid summers most definitely can lead to peeling and blistering, especially if you’re active.
Similarly, brutal winters can give way to dry, cracked, and peeling skin. You may be tempted to pick at scaly, peeling skin, but trust us; that’s only likely to make matters worse.
Toenail Infections in athletes’ foot
Nail fungus happens when the foot fungus reaches the bottom of the nils, It begins as a white or yellow-brown spot under the tip of your toenail. As the fungal infection goes deeper, it may become yellow big toenails with discoloration, thickening, and crumbling at the edges. Nail fungus can affect several nails at once.
Toenail fungus is also known as onychomycosis in scientific language. When fungus infects the areas between your toes and the skin of your feet, it’s called athlete’s foot.
Your dermatologist can easily identify Tinea Pedis as soon as he/she sees the affected area’s skin.
Tests may include:
Skin Lesion Biopsy
Skin Lesion KOH Exam
Is Tinea Pedis Contagious?
Yes, Tinea Pedis is very contagious. It is totally different from other common skin infections like tinea versicolor. It can easily spread through direct contact with skin, and the exchange of toiletries and can also pass through items such as shoes, socks, stockings, loofah, and common pool surfaces.
Is Vicks vaporub effective on feet fungus?
After going through many studies the only thing I understand is that Vicks rub changes the appearance of nails and skin, Vicks is a mentholated ointment that moisturizes and hydrates the skin making it supple to touch.
But when it comes to controlling the fungus, it is not possible by just rubbing Vicks, however, it does contain camphor and eucalyptus oil which does possess antifungal activities, but it is not enough to completely treat the foot fungus.
Foot fungus Treatment
The first line of defense against foot fungus is to kill at first sight, you can do it pretty easily,
Either soak your foot in foo bath with a 70:30 ratio of rubbing alcohol and water, or you can also apply rubbing alcohol directly to the skin, but the biggest drawback is rubbing alcohol can make your skin drier, and to counter that you might need expensive moisturizers.
Turmeric water footbath
The best footbath is a turmeric water foot bath. mix a tablespoon of turmeric in warm water and keep your foot submerged in this water for at least 30 minutes.
You can also make a paste of turmeric powder and lemon juice. Known for its far-reaching antiseptic, antifungal, antioxidant and astringent properties, lemon is an excellent natural remedy for treating fungal infection of toenails. In addition to fighting fungal infections in an effective manner, this vitamin C-loaded fruit helps in restoring the natural color of the nail.
Camphor and coconut oil.
As we have discussed earlier Vicks vaporub does contain a small amount of camphor. Camphor has a wide variety of topical uses due to its antibacterial, antifungal, and anti-inflammatory properties. It can be used to treat skin fungus conditions, improves skin texture, and relieve toenail fungus pain.
Just mix camphor with pure coconut oil, apply to the affected area and leave it for at least 1 hour.
Tea tree oil.
Tea tree oil is a medicinal oil and is widely used to treat various skin Infections.
Due to its strong antibacterial and antifungal properties, tea tree oil is often used to control fungal infections, and you can also use tea tree oil for toenail fungus. People may use it alone or alongside OTC anti-fungal ointments or creams for serious nail fungus.
Clove oil can be the next big thing for treating severe fungus infections of the skin,
thanks to its newly found antifungal properties and pain-relieving properties.
The antiseptic found in cloves helps fight against bacterial and fungal growth, according to NCBI studies. It is recommended to mix 6 to 8 drops of clove oil with 2 tablespoons of coconut oil and apply it to your toenail fungus a few times a day.
You can also combine it with OTC anti-fungal medicines for even faster results without harming your skin texture.