Athlete’s foot is a fungal infection and is known as tinea pedis in medical terms. It is commonly called the ringworm of the foot.
The fungus that grows on your foot and causes athlete’s foot may also grow on your heels, palms, and between the fingers. This fungus thrives in warm, moist areas, so certain things increase your risk of getting an athlete’s foot such as:
Athlete’s foot is a contagious infection and can be passed on through direct contact or by sharing shoes, socks, stockings, and shower or pool surfaces.
Several weeks of treatment with a medication applied to the feet can usually cure athlete's feet in people with new or short-term symptoms. Chronic or recurring athlete's foot infections also can be cured this way, but may require significant changes in foot care and several weeks of treatment.
More severe cases may call for an oral medication. Even after successful treatment, people remain at risk of re-infection if they do not follow prevention guidelines. Relapses are common.
The risk of getting an athlete’s foot can be reduced by keeping your feet clean, dry, and powdered. You could use an over-the-counter antifungal foot powder for this. You should:
Dermatologists specialize in the treatment of skin disorders, including athlete's foot. Additionally, family medicine physicians, internal medicine physicians, paediatricians, podiatrists (foot doctors), and other practitioners may also treat this common infection.
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