Is Athlete’s Foot Contagious?
Athlete’s foot is a fungal infection that may cause an itchy rash as well as blistered or scaly skin between the toes. While athlete’s foot, medically known as tinea pedis, is not necessarily dangerous, it is highly contagious and can be uncomfortable. The fungus that causes athlete’s foot is mainly found in warm, moist conditions. These places include the inside of your shoes and socks after they have been worn for long periods and moisture has built up. Exposure to the athlete’s foot often takes place in public areas, such as swimming pools and gym locker rooms, where people are more likely to walk barefoot. The fungus can easily spread by sharing towels or clothing that has been infected. While several lotions, creams, and sprays for athlete’s foot are available, the chances of reinfection are high if the surrounding conditions don’t change. It is suggested that shower or pool slippers be worn while in these areas where the fungus thrives. If you have a particularly stubborn case of athlete’s foot, please consult a podiatrist for more advanced treatment options.
Athlete’s foot is often an uncomfortable condition to experience. Thankfully, podiatrists specialize in treating athlete’s foot and offer the best treatment options. If you have any questions about athlete’s foot, consult with one of our podiatrists from Advanced Foot & Ankle Medical Center . Our doctors will assess your condition and provide you with quality treatment.
What Is Athlete’s Foot?
Tinea pedis, more commonly known as athlete’s foot, is a non-serious and common fungal infection of the foot. Athlete’s foot is contagious and can be contracted by touching someone who has it or infected surfaces. The most common places contaminated by it are public showers, locker rooms, and swimming pools. Once contracted, it grows on feet that are left inside moist, dark, and warm shoes and socks.
The most effective ways to prevent athlete’s foot include:
- Thoroughly washing and drying feet
- Avoid going barefoot in locker rooms and public showers
- Using shower shoes in public showers
- Wearing socks that allow the feet to breathe
- Changing socks and shoes frequently if you sweat a lot
Athlete’s foot initially occurs as a rash between the toes. However, if left undiagnosed, it can spread to the sides and bottom of the feet, toenails, and if touched by hand, the hands themselves. Symptoms include:
- Scaly and peeling skin
Diagnosis and Treatment
Diagnosis is quick and easy. Skin samples will be taken and either viewed under a microscope or sent to a lab for testing. Sometimes, a podiatrist can diagnose it based on simply looking at it. Once confirmed, treatment options include oral and topical antifungal medications.
If you have any questions, please feel free to contact our office located in Thousand Oaks, CA . We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot care needs.