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Athlete's Foot

What is Athlete's Foot?

Athlete's foot is a term used to describe a form of fungus infection of the feet. The medical term for athlete's foot is tinea pedis.

Athlete's foot is a very common skin condition. Many people will develop it at least once in their lives. Athlete's foot occurs mostly among teenage and adult males. It is uncommon in women and children under the age of 12.

Athlete's foot should not be ignored--it can be easily treated, but it also can be very resistant to treatment.

Moisture, sweating and lack of proper ventilation of the feet present the perfect setting for the fungus of athlete's foot to grow.

Why does Athlete's Foot develop?

The fungi that causes athlete's foot grows in moist, damp places. Sweaty feet, not drying feet well after swimming or bathing, tight shoes and socks, and a warm climate all contribute to the development of athlete's foot.

Symptoms of Athlete's Foot

Athlete's foot may affect different people in different ways. Some of the common symptoms are: itching, scaling, peeling and cracking of the skin between the toes, and redness, scaling and even blisters on the soles and along the sides of the feet.

Toenail Infections

Toenail infections can also accompany athlete's foot. Toenail infections can be very difficult to treat. Toenail infections result in scaling, crumbling and thickening of the nails and even nail loss.

How is athlete's foot diagnosed?

Your dermatologist or doctor will examine your feet. This examination may include a scraping of the skin on your feet. The skin scales are then examined under a microscope or placed in special substances to look for growth of the fungus.

How is athlete's foot treated?

If you have been diagnosed with athlete's foot, treatment should begin immediately. Your doctor will prescribe medication for you.

Can Athlete's Foot be prevented?

Yes. The best way to prevent athlete's foot is to:

  1. Wash your feet every day
  2. Dry your feet thoroughly, and keep them dry.

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