Athlete’s foot doesn’t just plague athletes. It can infect anyone who comes into contact with the type of dermatophyte fungus responsible for the itchy, red, burning patches. This common fungal infection is most prevalent in public areas, like locker rooms, swimming pools and showers — hence the “athlete” portion of the name — but it can also lurk in grass and on any hard surface. If you suspect you have come into contact with foot fungus, it’s best to apply an over-the-counter antifungal cream from your local pharmacy. We explore three ways to prevent this unsightly, uncomfortable foot condition.
Protect Your Feet from Pathogens
You can only develop athlete’s foot if: A) You come into direct contact with the athlete’s foot fungus, and B) There is a cut, scrape, blister, crack, break in the skin where the fungus can enter the body. So the first step to preventing athlete’s foot is to keep your body protected from fungus. You can do this by:
– Wearing shower shoes, flip-flops, or sandals while visiting public showers, gyms, pools, cruise ships, and hotel rooms.
– Washing your feet with soap and water daily, taking special care to get between the toes.
– Using a UV shoe sanitizer to kill 99.9% of the pathogens living inside your footwear.
Keep Your Feet Dry
In order for athlete’s foot fungus to thrive, the colony will need an environment that is warm, dark, and moist. Hot, sweaty shoes make the perfect haven for fungus! The sweat produced by the 250,000 sweat glands in the feet creates a delicious smorgasbord for fungus to feast on. You can keep your feet dry by:
– Letting your feet get some air — wear sandals as often as you can.
– Avoiding synthetic shoe materials like plastic or rubber, which cause copious sweating.
– Buying socks made from natural or sweat-wicking fabrics.
– Using a towel to dry between the toes after showering.
– Applying powder to the feet to absorb sweat.
– Changing socks daily or multiple times a day if need be.
– Alternating shoes every other day to allow for adequate drying time.
Understand Common Causes of Athlete’s Foot Re-Infection
Scientists have posited that some people are simply more susceptible to contracting foot fungus than others. So if you have had athlete’s foot in the past, you are probably the type of person who needs to take extra precautions to avoid foot fungus in the future. There are many ways that people inadvertently expose themselves to the athlete’s foot fungus again. To avoid coming down with athlete’s foot again, you should consider:
– Avoiding the sharing of towels, linens, socks, and shoes with others.
– Washing all sheets with hot water, antifungal detergent, and bleach.
– Finishing the full course of antifungal medication, even if symptoms abate.
– Regularly disinfecting nail clippers and files with rubbing alcohol.
– Sanitizing all footwear with a SteriShoe UV shoe sanitizer device to protect yourself from live, loose spores.
The germicidal UV light utilized by Sterishoe harnesses the same sanitization power as similar methods used by hospitals. A daily 45-minute treatment using the device can go far in keeping foot fungus away and keeping your feet healthy.