The medical name for Athlete’s foot is tinea pedis. As the name suggest, the condition is common to the feet of athletes and is caused by fungal infection. However, the condition is not restrcited only to the athletes. The fungal infection of the foot is generally seen in people whose feet remain wet for long or who have sweaty feet.
Athlete’s foot is a contagious infection and spreads rapidly within a group. It spreads via direct contact with the infected area or through use of clothes, towels, socks and shoes of the person who has athlete’s foot. Many times use of public bathrooms and swimming pools also results in the fungal infection.
Symptoms Of Athlete’s foot
The condition leads to formation of deep cracks in between the toes of the feet. The skin begins to peel out in large chunks making the area red and itchy. If left untreated, the cracks develop into blisters which can be very painful.
Treatment For Athlete’s foot
Athlete’s foot should be treated in time so as to control the spread of infection to the surrounding skin or to other people. You can consult a doctor for prescription medicines for the fungal infection or you could buy over-the-counter medications which include topical gels and creams. One can also treat athlete’s foot at home using natural and effective remedies.
Some Of These Remedies Are
Garlic For Treating Athlete’s foot
The antifungal properties of garlic are beneficial in getting rid of the infection causing fungi from the foot. Crush 6 peeled pods of garlic to a fine paste. Using clean hands rub the garlic paste directly over the infected area.
Secure the garlic paste in place by wrapping the area with medicated gauze. Leave the gauze on for 3-4 hours. Remove the gauze and garlic paste and throw them. Wash the area with medicated soap and water. Dry the foot well and re-do the garlic treatment for another four hours.
The treatment should be done thrice daily for a period of two months. Do not forego the treatment if you find the infection healing sooner than you expected. Discontinuing the treatment until the infection is completely gone will result in its re-appearance.
Apple Cider Vinegar For Treating Athlete’s foot
The acetic acid present in apple cider vinegar helps remove the fungi from the infection by killing them and preventing their growth. Prepare a foot bath using a solution of two cups apple cider vinegar and one cup of water. Pour the solution in a small basin and soak the infected foot in the solution for 15-20 minutes.
Dry the foot on a soft towel thoroughly after removing from the solution. You could also use a hand dryer for drying the foot. Use the apple cider foot bath treatment thrice a day to get rid of the infection. Continue using the treatment till the infection is completely gone.
Tea Tree Oil Essential Oil For Treating Athlete’s foot
Tea tree essential oil is used in many products due to its antifungal and antibacterial properties. Infections caused by bacteria and fungi greatly benefit from use of tea tree oil. Pour 5-6 drops of tea tree essential oil directly over the infected area and rub the oil well into the skin using clean fingers.
Repeat application of tea tree oil after every couple of hours. If your skin hurts due to direct application of the oil then mix tea tree oil with a little of olive oil or coconut oil before application. Regular use of the tea tree essential oil treatment will cure athlete’s foot completely in four months time.
Cornstarch For Treating Athlete’s foot
Cornstarch powder is effective in taking care of sweaty feet. Cornstarch powder absorbs the moisture from the skin leaving it dry and infection free. Moist and wet skin encourages the growth of infection causing fungi. Sprinkle cornstarch powder on your feet and in your socks. The treatment should be done every time you feel your feet turning moist.
Use brown cornstarch powder in place of white cornstarch powder for treating athlete’s foot effectively. Brown cornstarch powder can be made by roasting white cornstarch powder over medium flame in a wok. Take care not to burn the powder or it will lose its ability to absorb moisture from the skin.
Cinnamon For Treating Athlete’s foot
Cinnamon is a spice that is commonly used in cooking and baking. The spice has mild antiseptic properties which discourage the growth of fungi and bacteria on the skin. Prepare a foot soak by adding 5-6 cinnamon sticks to half liter of boiling water. Boil the sticks for 10-12 minutes and remove from flame.
Let the water come down to warm temperature. Soak your foot in the warm cinnamon water for 15 minutes. This is an excellent treatment for curing athlete’s foot and should be done at least thrice a day.
Lemon Juice For Treating Athlete’s foot
Lemon juice has acidic properties which are useful in the removal of bacteria and fungi from the skin. Prepare lemon juice foot soak by combining half liter water with juice of two ripe lemons. Put the affected foot in the solution and soak for 20 minutes. Remove the foot and dry it on a soft towel. Repeat the treatment twice a day until the infection is completely gone.
Salt Water For Treating Athlete’s foot
In a small basin pour half liter of warm water. Add one cup of rock salt in the water. Soak your foot in the salt water for 20 minutes. Rub the salt water in between your toes as well. After 20 minutes, dry your feet completely using hair dryer.
You can also sprinkle some cornstarch powder on the foot especially in between the toes to ensure the foot remains dry completely. If you or someone close to you suffers from athlete’s foot then prevent the spread of infection by not sharing clothes, towel, socks and shoes.
Wash your clothes, especially the socks, in hot water to kill the fungi that cause the infection. Soak your clothes in hot water and a strong detergent for 30 minutes before washing them with clean water.