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Athlete's foot can cause not only painful sensations, but also simply irritate. The condition, known in the medical community as tinea pedis, causes itching , redness, and even cracks in the skin of the feet and toes. Get Meds Info spoke with Alan Bass, DPM, American Podiatric Medical Association, Orthopedic Surgeon and Spokesperson, to find out what causes this condition and how it can be properly treated. "It is caused by fungal organisms and fungal organisms such as hot, humid and humid places," explains Dr. Bass. "This makes the foot, especially in shoes and socks, an ideal breeding ground for fungal organisms."
The best solution, according to Dr. Bass, is pretty simple: keep your feet clean and dry. This means changing your socks frequently if you are prone to sweating and certainly if you plan to exercise during the day. In addition to keeping your feet clean and dry, Dr. Bass recommends looking for antifungal powders to apply to your feet before putting on your socks. Dr. Bass says that any of the popular antifungal creams can help. Most importantly, Dr. Bass says that it is important to know when to see a real podiatrist.
"Athlete's foot infections can become serious," says Dr. Bass. "If the redness, cracks or peeling doesn't go away in two weeks with home treatment, it's time to see a podiatrist." It may also be time to see a doctor if the fungus gets under the toenail, because then it cannot be treated with topical creams and powders at home.
These are the best foot care products for athletes on the market.
Our top picks
It comes in a spray form that works great to cover all the cracks on your foot.
Soothes irritated and chapped skin and helps clear yeast infections.
It cures most germs between the toes in a week, relieving the itching and burning sensation of athlete's foot.
Not only does it help eliminate athlete's foot, but it also leaves feet feeling fresh and smelling clean.
Use ingredients like aloe vera, tea tree oil, calendula, turmeric, and arnica to help fight fungus and soothe itchy, scaly feet.
This particular application method resolves symptoms in as little as one week, but be sure to follow the package directions exactly.
Powders can seem bothersome and uncomfortable to apply, but using them as a spray can make application a lot easier. This version of Lotrimin comes in a spray form that is great for covering every crevice in your foot.
This formula contains two percent miconazole nitrate, which has been clinically shown to reduce itchy skin and can even be used as an initial prophylaxis for athlete's foot. The great thing about powdered formulas in general is that they can contain active ingredients as they work to dry out damp areas. In fact, they may be the best option for anyone trying to prevent a relapse or even relieve itching.
Lotrimin's formula soothes chapped and irritated skin and helps clear yeast infections. This formula can also be used for ringworm rashes, so it is convenient to keep it in your medicine cabinet. It can be used for children over the age of two, so if your child is suffering from a foot injury, please contact Lotrimin.
Since you likely want to use powdered products during the day or before your workout, consider the creams for dinner or at home. Creams are generally more soothing than powders, making them ideal for use after bathing. Don't worry, it won't stain your clothes or bedding.
Lamisil antifungal cream cures most athletes of the foot between the toes within a week, relieving the itching and burning sensation in athlete's foot. This one-ounce pack makes it an easy addition to any gym bag so you can take it with you any time you exercise.
If you want to stick with the athlete's natural treatment, try Trueremedy Naturals Tea Tree Oil Foot Soak. Tea tree oil is a natural antifungal agent and, in the form of a bath salt, it is particularly non-invasive. Not only does it help eliminate mycoses, but it also leaves a feeling of freshness and a clean smell.
This foot bath uses a combination of tea tree oil, Epsom salt, sea salt, and other essential oils to help relieve itching and soften the skin. It is a natural solution that is also a great way to relax.
For those looking to stick with a natural formula, Biveco Antifungal Cream is an excellent option. This cream uses ingredients like aloe vera, tea tree oil, calendula, turmeric, and arnica to help fight fungus and soothe itchy and flaky feet.
Not only is this cream great for fighting fungal infections like athlete's foot, athlete's itch, and ringworm, it can also be used on dry and irritated skin.
Topping the list are the top foot care brands for athletes: Lotrimin and Lamisil. These formulas have evolved over the years, and while they may come in different forms from childhood, they are just as effective. This particular application method resolves symptoms in as little as a week, but be sure to follow the directions on the package exactly.
When you go to exercise or put your shoes on all day, you will definitely need Lotrimin Liquid Athlete's Foot Spray Powder (see on Amazon ) as your first line of defense. Fortunately, although it is a powder, it is easy to apply and the shape of the spray makes it easy to get between toes and crevices in irritated skin. When you return home for the day, be sure to apply a cream like Lamisil AT Antifungal Cream (see on Amazon ).
What to look for when treating athlete's foot
Choose between powder and cream based on what works best for you and your schedule. Remember that powder is good at absorbing moisture, so consider using it before putting your shoes on for the day. Creams are soothing, but they are uncomfortable to use during the day, so it is best to apply before bed.
There are several active ingredients that have been proven effective in treating athlete's foot. Dr. Bass advises looking for 1% terbinafine hydrochloride, which is commonly found in creams; 2% Miconazole Nitrate, found in powders; or one percent terbinafine hydrochloride, which may appear as a cream or powder.
If it is important that you try the natural method, look for products that contain tea tree oil, as it is a natural antifungal agent . It can be used to treat other yeast infections, such as itching and ringworm.
While there are many treatments for athlete's foot, there will be one that works best for you and your specific needs. If you have mobility issues and your feet are hard to reach, a spray is best. If you prefer to use the product at night, you can try a cream that takes a little longer to absorb into your skin.
Frequently asked questions
The fungus loves moisture. According to Amy Sheth, MD, an orthopedic specialist based in Los Gatos, California, the best way to maintain this condition is to keep your feet dry. 'Keeping your shoes dry, twisting them and exposing them to the sun if you suffer from sweaty feet is where you should start. With these techniques, you can crush it even before it starts, ”explains Dr. Sheth. 'If you have sweaty feet, you should keep them dry. Some people use baking soda or light cornstarch to keep moisture or dust out. You can wear moisture wicking socks or change your socks frequently. ”These methods, along with using antifungal powders and creams before and after a long day, may be your best defense against athlete's foot.
If you have athletic feet, remember that fungi spread easily . Linda Stein Gold, MD, chief of dermatology at Henry Ford Health System in West Bloomfield, Michigan, says you need to be vigilant if you live with someone with athletic feet. It can be spread by sharing shoes and walking barefoot in public places like locker rooms and swimming pools. Dr. Stein Gold often advises people with and without medical conditions to always wear sandals or flip flops in damp public places.
Keeping your shoes dry, taking your shoes off, and exposing them to the sun if you suffer from sweaty feet is where you should start. With these methods, you can crush [the fungus] even before [athlete's foot] starts. – Dr. Ami Sheth, Orthopedic Specialist, Los Gatos, California.
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Brittany Loggins is a freelance writer who has covered everything from wellness to politics. She earned her journalism degree from the University of Georgia and lives in New York.
Additional reporting of this story by Janae Price
As a health writer, Yanae Price understands the importance of a competent and honest review. When there are so many different opinions, it's great to have a short answer that eliminates all the junk on the internet. Each product in this article has been carefully researched and obtained by professionals with the potential needs of users in mind.