Athlete's Foot

Fungal Infection Treatments for Bryn Mawr, Newtown Square, Philadelphia, and the Main Line

Bryn Mawr Skin & Cancer Institute provides diagnosis and treatments for a wide range of dermatological conditions, including athlete’s foot, for Bryn Mawr, Newtown Square, and other Philadelphia-area patients. The medical term for athlete’s foot is tinea pedis. This common, mildly contagious skin disorder is a fungal infection that occurs on the skin of the feet but can also affect the nails, hands, and groin if it spreads. While it isn’t a serious medical issue, tinea pedis can be frustrating as it has a high relapse rate.

Bryn Mawr Skin & Cancer Institute uses the safest and most effective methods available to treat athlete’s foot. Please BOOK ONLINE, call 610.525.5028, or Contact Us to schedule an appointment.

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What Causes Athlete’s Foot?

Tinea pedis—commonly referred to as athlete’s foot—is caused by a fungus. A variety of fungi known as dermatophytes—which also cause jock itch and ringworm—is to blame for athlete’s foot. Dermatophytes flourish in warm, moist, dark environments, such as frequently worn shoes and between your toes.

What Are the Symptoms of Athlete’s Foot?

Most athlete’s foot presents with an itchy scaling rash on the bottom of the feet or with maceration (softening of the skin tissue) and scaling between the toes. Athlete’s foot may also present with itchy blisters or crusted and scaling lesions on the feet.

Who is At Risk for Contracting Athlete’s Foot?

The name athlete’s foot is given to this condition because it is more prevalent in people who are more physically active (athletes), but you don’t have to be an athlete to get it. This condition affects men and women of all age groups. Tinea pedis is most commonly spread by direct contact or by contact with skin cells of someone else who has the condition.

There are behaviours, activities, and conditions that may increase your risk of developing athlete’s foot. These include walking barefoot; going into frequently wet public areas such as locker rooms, showers, communal baths, and swimming pools; sharing socks and other footwear, clothing, or towels with others; wearing shoes that are tight and have closed toes; allowing feet to remain wet for extended lengths of time; having a weakened immune system or diabetes; having frequently sweaty feet; and having nail injuries, open cuts, or sores on the feet that serve as entry points for the fungus.

Treatment Options for Athlete’s Foot

Athlete’s foot is unlikely to get better on its own. Over-the-counter topical anti-fungal medications, creams, sprays, and powders are available. However, if these over-the-counter treatments aren’t working after two weeks, or you’re experiencing a significant amount of discomfort, or your skin is showing signs of a more serious infection, or the rash has spread to other areas, a dermatologist can prescribe more effective prescription medications.

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Meet Our Dermatologists &
Certified Physician Assistants

Our board-certified dermatologists & PA-Cs are dedicated to detecting and treating skin cancers. We treat the full spectrum of skin diseases. Our Mohs and Plastic Surgery practices are integrated, and offer patients the most advanced skin cancer treatment, delivering superior outcomes.

How Can You Prevent Athlete’s Foot?

One of the best ways of preventing this condition is simply by keeping your feet clean and dry. You can also follow these tips to avoid getting athlete’s foot:

  • Cleanse your feet with soap and water each day
  • Make a habit of drying your feet completely after you wash them—especially the toes and the areas between them
  • Use a hair dryer to help dry your feet
  • Keep a separate towel for your feet
  • Apply antifungal treatments to your feet each day
  • Wash towels, socks, and bedding in water that’s at a temperature of 140°F (60°C) or higher
  • Go barefoot when at home to allow your feet to air out
  • Wear clean socks each day, and change them when they get sweaty
  • Choose socks made from breathable materials like cotton or wool
  • Cleanse your shoes with disinfectant wipes and sprays
  • Always wear sandals or flip-flops when walking in public places to protect your feet
  • Avoid sharing towels, socks, or shoes with others
  • Wear shoes that are light and well-ventilated instead of tight-fitting shoes that make your feet sweaty
  • Alternate wearing different pairs of shoes instead of wearing the same pair every day
  • Don’t scratch or pick at the affected skin

What Other Help Is Available?

The Bryn Mawr Skin & Cancer Institute team offers diagnosis and treatment for numerous rashes, skin inflammation, and other problems, including contact dermatitis, hives, poison ivy, and more. Our dermatologists will diagnose your condition and provide you with the most appropriate treatment plan.

Want more advice on diagnosis and treatment for athlete’s foot? Contact Bryn Mawr Skin & Cancer Institute, serving Bryn Mawr, Newtown Square, and Philadelphia. To schedule an appointment, Please BOOK ONLINE, call 610.525.5028, or Contact Us.

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