Athlete’s foot is referred to as tinea pedis. It’s a common infection of the skin of the foot and may sometimes spread to the groin, palms and other parts of the body.
Athlete’s foot is caused by Tinea pedis, a fungus that thrives in warm and moist environments, like your feet when they’re covered by socks and shoes.
Some symptoms of the disease include:
• Excessive itching between the toes, blistering and a burning sensation.
• Dry, peeling skin
• Discolouration of the toenails
The risk of getting athlete’s foot increases with excessive sweating, minor injuries to the skin or nails, a weakened immune system, letting your feet stay moist for long, wearing closed shoes most of the time etc.
Women are less likely to develop athlete’s foot, compared to men and the reason is not known.
Athlete’s foot can spread from person to person through contact with contaminated materials or surfaces. It could also spread from one part of the body to another, so it’s important that you treat the infected area as soon as possible.
Taking good care of your skin and practicing proper hygiene will help prevent and even in some cases, treat the infected area as soon as the problem starts.
Athlete’s foot can also be effectively handled with simple home remedies.
Home Remedies for Athlete’s Foot
Baking soda is a simple home remedy that can be used to cure athlete’s foot. It has astringent properties that help get rid of moisture in your feet and also neutralizes your skin’s pH level.
Simply make a paste by mixing a tablespoon of baking soda and a little water. Apply the paste between your toes and leave for a few minutes before rinsing with lukewarm water. Afterwards, make sure your feet are dried thoroughly. Do this at least three times a day for a few weeks to prevent fungus from spreading.
You could also sprinkle some baking soda in your socks and shoes as this will help absorb moisture and prevent recurrence of the fungal infection. Do this for about three weeks for the best results.
Onion has anti-inflammatory, anti fungal and antibiotic properties that help handle athlete’s foot. It will therefore help you get rid of the fungus and hamper its spread. To use
• Start by grinding two onions and strain the juice using a strainer.
• Wash the affected area using soap (preferably an anti fungal one), then apply the juice on the area.
• Let it stay for at least half an hour
• Then wash the area with lukewarm water and pat dry.
• Apply some talcum powder so that the area stays free from moisture
• Do this two times a day for up to four weeks.
Olive leaf contains anti-fungal as well as antimicrobial properties that help kill the fungus that causes athlete’s foot.
To use :
• Grind a few olive leaves into a paste
• Using cotton balls, apply the paste on the affected area and cover using a tape.
• Leave it on for thirty minutes
• After thirty minutes, rinse off with lukewarm water and then pat dry thoroughly
• Follow this method twice a day for about two weeks to get rid of the problem.
• You could also make use of olive oil extract to get rid of different types of yeast and fungal infections.
Cinnamon is a reliable as well as effective remedy for athlete’s foot due to its anti-fungal and antiperspirant properties. To use :
• Break eight to 10 cinnamon sticks into small pieces. Add the pieces to four cups of boiling water.
• Simmer the solution for five minutes on low heat. Then let it steep for 45 minutes.
• Soak your feet in the solution for at least half an hour. Then thoroughly pat dry your feet.
Repeat daily before going to bed for one to two months.
Tea bags could also be used to treat athlete’s foot. Tea contains tannic acid, a natural astringent that helps to restrict fungal activity and keep your feet free of excess moisture. To use :
• Steep at least five tea bags (black tea bags are goods enough) in four cups of water for five minutes. You could use any kind of tea except herbal teas
• Let the water cool, then soak your feet in tea bath for half an hour.
• Dry your feet thoroughly.
• Repeat twice daily fie about six weeks
Tea Tree Oil
This is a potent antiseptic and has anti-fungal properties that will help destroy the fungus. It will also help hamper its spread.
Simply mix equal parts of a hundred percent pure tea tree oil and olive oil. Rub the mixture on the affected area twice a day. Follow the remedy for several weeks to prevent the recurrence of this skin issue.
As an alternative, you could add a few drops of tea tree oil in two tablespoons of aloe vera gel. Rub the mixture on the infected area twice a day for about eight weeks.
Salt is an effective home remedy for athlete’s foot. It will help kill the fungus that is responsible for the annoying skin infection. To use :
• Pour a quart of lukewarm water in a tub and add six teaspoons of salt.
• Next, soak your feet in the solution for ten minutes. Use a towel to dry your feet thoroughly.
• Next, dab some baking soda between your toes so that the moisture in your feet is absorbed.
• Repeat this five times every day until there’s a noticeable improvement.
• Note that you should not use this if you have wounds or open sores on your feet.
According to research, garlic contains a compound known as ajoene which acts as a natural anti-fungal and antibacterial agent. You could add a clove or two to your food if you want the healing process to happen faster. For topical treatment, try this method :
• Crush a garlic clove and add three drops of olive oil to make a paste
• Apply the paste in the affected areas and leave for about thirty minutes
• Afterwards, wash the paste off with water and antifungal soap.
• Pat dry the skin, making sure there is no trace of moisture left
Repeat this remedy once every day for several weeks to treat an infection and prevent it from returning.
These home remedies will facilitate as well as speed up the healing process. However, you need to give home treatments at least three weeks to work. If the symptoms get worse, see a doctor.