The fungus of Athlete’s Foot may be present on the skin of the feet in many people without causing infection or other symptoms. However, some people have inherited a susceptibility to the fungus, and these people tend to get recurrent bouts of Athlete’s Foot.
Athlete’s Foot affects different people in different ways. In some, it causes scaling and itching between the toes. In some others, it causes scaling of the soles and sides of the feet, and in others, small blisters develop. The toenails may become involved in Athlete’s Foot and this leads to a yellow discoloration and brittleness of the nails.
- Heat and moisture are factors that increase the likelihood of the development of Athlete’s Foot. It is precipitated by the hot, moist environment caused by sweating in shoes.
- Prevention should be directed at keeping the feet cool and dry with powder and light cotton socks that are changed frequently. Whenever possible, one should go barefoot at home or wear open shoes to decrease sweating.
- Anti-fungal creams are very successful in eliminating the symptoms such as itching and treating the fungus. However, relapses are very common and repeated treatments are often necessary.
- Nail changes are often resistant to creams or other topical treatment. Oral medications taken for a number of months are often necessary to eliminate the fungus from the nails. While it takes 6-12 months for the nails to re-grow normally, the pills are only taken for a few months.
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