Do you find our website to be helpful?
Yes   No

How to Prevent Athlete's Foot

The term athlete’s foot may be somewhat misleading as this fungal infection can strike almost anyone, whether you’re active or not. And once athlete’s foot takes hold, it can lead to a very uncomfortable rash, which can turn into a more painful experience if blisters and cracks form.

At Neuhaus Foot and Ankle, our team of experienced podiatrists believes that prevention is the best approach to dealing with fungal infections, which is why we’ve pulled together the following tips before the warmer months are upon us.

Staying high and dry in public places

Athlete’s foot, which is medically known as tinea pedis, earned its name because of the prevalence of fungal infections among those who spend time in locker rooms and sweaty socks — two places where the fungus is found in abundance and where it grows. 

The fungus that leads to athlete’s foot thrives in warm, moist, and dark environments, such as:

So, the first, and arguably most important, prevention step is to keep your feet high and dry in public places such as these. This means wearing flip-flops rather than going barefoot, especially into gym or locker room showers. And once you’re done showering or out of the pool, you should dry your feet as quickly as possible.

Mind your sweaty shoes and socks

Whether you’ve just come off the tennis courts or you’re back from a round of golf, peel off your socks and wash your feet as soon as you can. Lingering in sweaty shoes or socks that may be harboring the fungus is an easy road to athlete’s foot.

You should also wash your socks after every use — never reuse dirty ones — and allow your shoes to thoroughly dry before wearing them again. Today’s clothing has come a long way in terms of shoes and socks that breathe better and wick away moisture, so we advise you to use these great advances and upgrade your footwear, especially if you’re active.

Wash and dry your feet daily

It sounds obvious, but another great prevention technique is to wash and dry your feet daily. Too often people rush this part of their bathing routine. Use a gentle soap and be sure to dry your feet completely — tossing the towel in the wash immediately if you see any signs of athlete's foot.

A great time to practice this daily ritual is right before bed so that you know your bed will remain fungus-free (and a little bit cleaner and nicer smelling, as well).

When infection strikes

If you do contract athlete's foot, it’s important that you do what you can to prevent spreading it to others. If you follow the steps above and make sure not to share any towels, socks, shoes, or linens, you can keep the problem confined to your feet until they are fully healed.

And then that’s where we come in. If you suspect you have athlete’s foot, early intervention can save you considerable discomfort in the future. Simply contact one of our locations in Hermitage, Brentwood, Nashville, Mount Juliet, Waverly, Smyrna, Murfreesboro, Gallatin, or Lebanon, Tennessee, for guidance and treatment.

You Might Also Enjoy...

Dietary Steps for Managing Gout

Anyone who struggles with gout understands how painful the condition can be, which makes preventing a flare-up the best course of action. One of the best ways to limit gout is through your diet. We review some dietary do’s and don’ts here.

Telltale Signs You Need Bunion Surgery

Bunions start out small enough, but without early intervention, they can become much larger and more problematic, often requiring surgery. Here’s a look at some of the warning signs that surgery might be your best option.

Why Does My Nail Fungus Keep Coming Back?

Toenail fungus can be one tough condition to get rid of once it takes hold. To eradicate the infection and keep it from recurring, fighting toenail fungus requires patience and vigilance. Here’s how.

Safe Exercises When You Have Arthritis

When your feet and ankles are in pain because of arthritis, exercise may be the last thing on your mind. The truth is that exercise is one of the best things you can do. Here are some tips for exercising safely with arthritis.

Diabetic Foot Ulcers: Causes and Treatment

Of the many potential complications that stem from diabetes, foot ulcers are among the more common and most dangerous. Thankfully, you can stay one step ahead of diabetic foot ulcers with a little diligence and the right care.

Orthotics for Hammertoe: Can They Help?

The key to halting progressive foot conditions like hammertoes is taking early action — and the earlier we can address the problem, the less invasive the solution. Explore whether custom orthotics can play a role in halting your hammertoe.