Athlete’s Foot (tinea pedis) is a skin infection caused by fungus that is commonly found in the feet because it thrives in a dark, moist, warm environment, such as socks or shoes.
Most athletes have sweaty feet and are in places where fungus thrives – damp areas like swimming pools, showers and locker rooms – which is where we get the term "Athlete’s Foot.” When we expose our feet to this kind of environment, we are inviting the fungus to attack our feet.
Athlete’s Foot is often found on the soles of the feet and in between the toes. Itchy, dry, scaling skin are signs that you may have Athlete’s Foot. In more extreme cases, inflammation, cracks and blisters may occur, as well as an infection that can spread to other areas of the body, including toenails.
You can protect yourself against Athlete’s Foot by doing the following:
- Avoid walking barefoot, especially in areas near swimming pools, in locker rooms and public showers.
- Wash your feet with soap and water every day.
- Keep your feet as dry as possible.
- Change your socks during the day if your feet consistently sweat.
- Minimize your sweaty feet by using anti-fungal powders, sprays or creams.