How to Get Rid of Foot Fungus
Athlete’s foot, known also as tinea pedis, is a type of fungal infection occurring on a person’s foot. This infection can cause the foot to peel, exhibit redness, and experience burning and itching. In some cases, it can also cause sores and blisters. Athlete’s foot is a common infection, and there are many ways on how to get rid of foot fungus you can try.
The fungus that causes athlete’s foot grows in moist but warm environments. They can grow in your socks, shoes, or even in swimming pools, as well as in locker rooms and on public shower floors. It is rampant during humid weathers and summer seasons. Because of this, people who experience this infection are usually those who wear tight shoes often and those who regularly swim in community pools or use public baths. They need to know how to get rid of foot fungus to reduce the risks.
Eliminating fungus is actually very hard. Whether naturally or through chemical medications, this infection typically takes time to be removed. Still, there are ways on how to get rid of them soon enough.
If you want to know how to get rid of foot fungus, you should first know how to prevent it.
- You have to wear proper and clean footwear. Your shoes should be lightweight and breathable. If you have more than one pair, alternately wear them. If your feet sweat a lot, you should change socks at least twice a day. Make sure that your socks’ material is cotton, wool, or other materials that wick away moisture. If your activity allows it, go barefoot instead.. The skin between your toes should be kept dry. To do this, twist a tissue paper and make a cord out of it; wrap it around your toes to fill the gaps that may be affected by fungus. Change the wrap as often as possible during the day. Your skin will start to heal once it dries out. Powder the affected area whenever possible.
- Keep your immune system strong. A weak immune system will make it easier for foot fungus and other infections to cause harm.
- Exercise. Compared to other parts of the body, your feet have less blood circulation. This means that your immune system will find it harder to detect infections in the foot and eliminate them. This makes exercising important. However, you shouldn’t start performing strenuous activities that may require you to wear thick shoes. Walking should be sufficient and it’s arguably the best exercise because you can do it barefoot, or while wearing breathable shoes or slippers.
- Tea tree oil application. One effective way on how to get rid of foot fungus is through a topical medication that contains at least 10% tea tree oil. On the other hand, pure tea-tree oil is proven to improve the skin of those affected by toenail fungus. Tea tree oil is only applied to the skin and should not be taken orally. It can cause, coma, rashes, confusion, difficulty or inability to walk, and unsteadiness.
- Garlic application. Garlic contains ajoene, an antifungal compound proven effective in fighting several fungal infections which include athlete’s foot. Ajoene compounds can only be obtained by crushing garlic cloves. Add them to your foot bath and soak your feet for about 30 minutes. You can also mix crushed garlic and olive oil to make an ointment. Rub this on the affected area using a cotton ball.
- Do not make yourself susceptible to reinfection. While you are treating your foot fungus, you should avoid using other people’s shoes, bath mats, and towels. Also, avoid walking barefoot in public places.
- Clean with soap. Wash your feet at least twice a day and make sure you use soap. After washing, thoroughly dry them.
- Over the counter meds. For some foot fungus infections, such as athlete’s foot, there are several antifungal over-the-counter medications you can use, and they are effective most of the time.
- Persistence. Treatment of foot fungus doesn’t stop when the symptoms disappear. Since the immune system cannot quickly detect infections in the foot, there is still a possibility that the fungus is still on your feet even if there are no symptoms. Treatment should continue for three to six weeks after the symptoms go away.
- Use Betadine. Betadine is a cheap over-the-counter remedy that you can use to treat foot fungus. If your foot infection has already caused cracks and redness between your toes, there may already be bacteria in the affected area. If that’s the case, soak your feet in a solution with one quart of warm water and two capfuls of Betadine. Do this for about 20 minutes on a daily basis. After soaking, dry both feet thoroughly and apply antifungal medication. This treatment is not recommended for pregnant women.
- Avoid bleaching. If you want to dry out your infection, do not use home treatments that contain strong chemicals such as alcohol. These can severely damage your skin.
- Treat your footwear as well. If you have foot fungus, then your shoes have it too. Use antifungal spray on your shoes to keep your feet from being re-infected. Do this each time you take your shoes off.
- Air your shoes out. When the weather is warm, take out the laces of your shoes and pull their tongues up. Set them in a place with proper ventilation and sunlight. The air and sunshine will kill the fungus and keep your shoes dry.
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Natural remedies on how to get rid of foot fungus at home are commonly found in your kitchen as well as in your fridge. Here are some of them:
- Baking soda. Directly sprinkle some baking soda inside your shoes to absorb moisture. Also read: Baking Soda Cleanse Body Of Toxins
- Corn starch. Corn starch absorbs moisture, so rubbing some of it on your feet is not a bad idea. Corn starch that has been lightly browned is even better because of its reduced moisture content. This allows for better absorption.
- Cinnamon. Soaking your foot in cinnamon tea can help slow down the formation of foot fungus. You have to soak your feet for up to 30 minutes.
- Yogurt. This is one of the best foods when it comes to fighting fungus. Yogurt has active good bacteria. Acidophilus helps in removing oral and vaginal yeast, and it can also improve other fungi-affected areas in the body.
- Vinegar. Mix 1 cup of vinegar with about 2 quarts of water. Soak your feet in the solution for about 30 minutes each night. You can also mix one cup of vinegar and one cup of water then apply it directly to the affected spot using a piece of cotton. You will know if your infection is serious if you feel a stinging sensation upon contact. Ensure that your feet are dry before putting on socks and your footwear. Apple cider vinegar is a good choice.
- Lemon. This can help reduce the odor coming from your feet. Just squeeze a piece of lemon and mix with water (2 ounces). Also read: Some Tips On How To Get Rid Of Foot Odor In Shoes and Home Remedies For Shoe Odor
- Tea. The tannic acid found in tea is often mentioned when discussing the best ways on how to get rid of foot fungus. Tannic acid is a soothing component that helps dry the foot and kill fungus. A foot soak can be made by putting 6 bags of black tea in 1 quart of warm water.
- Salt. You can soak your foot in warm water with 1 tablespoon of salt. Do this for 10 minutes before drying your feet. Afterwards, put some baking soda around your toes.
When these ways on how to get rid of foot fungus don’t work, you should go to your doctor for treatment. The following are signs that you should see a physician to have your infection examined:
- If cracks between toes appear. This might be a sign of a skin infection known as cellulitis.
- If your athlete’s foot doesn’t subside. If your infection doesn’t seem to show any improvement after three weeks of home treatment, you may have psoriasis or eczema.
- If your feet only gets worse despite regular treatment. Some strains of foot fungus are so strong that only prescription medicines can fight them.
- If both of your feet are swollen
- If pus occurs in the affected areas
- If the fungus also infects your hands, you may require oral prescription medication.
- If the nails on your toes appear thick and discoloured
Also read: Essential Oils For Itchy Feet
They may be infected as well. Even over-the-counter medicine fail frequently in treating toenail fungus.
When considering how to get rid of foot fungus, be careful in using some over-the-counter medications. Some of them may interact and could make your condition worse. Always trim your nails. Toenails with advanced strains of fungus continuously growing underneath could end up getting pushed outwards. Before trimming your nails, soak your feet first in warm water for about 30 minutes. If you do this, you’ll notice that your nails will become loose in parts where fungi usually build up. Just cut the separated nail away and scrape the fungus off. Do not tear off your toe nails using your fingers; always use a nail clipper or nail scissors. The best time to trim is after taking a bath, when your nails are at their softest.
Learning how to get rid of foot fungus is not that difficult, but it requires patience and consistency of treatment. The fungus can come back anytime when it gets the chance, so you have to be prepared. Foot fungus can spread quickly so you should treat it immediately when you notice it. It can spread to your hands and groin, as well as to other parts of the body.
The best known medication against severe cases of foot fungus are pills that only dermatologists can prescribe. Usually, patients are told to take them every day for about three months. However, these pills may not be for everyone. They can affect your liver and other antifungal medicines can interact with them. That’s why natural remedies are still the most popular among sufferers.
Overall, knowing the best way on how to get rid of foot fungus won’t be difficult, as long as you remember and consider everything you’ve read here.