Athlete’s foot starts out as little more than redness and irritation. However, according to Columbia, TN-based podiatrist Dr. Danielle Malin, the itching and discomfort is actually a fungal infection that can quickly worsen.
Dr. Malin explains that athlete’s foot is caused by fungal spores that infect the skin. If you have athlete’s foot, chances are you came into contact with it after being barefoot in a contaminated area, such as a gym shower or locker room. Unfortunately, athlete’s foot thrives in the same conditions you’ll find inside of shoes and boots: damp and warm.
So, how do you know if you have athlete’s foot? According to Columbia-based podiatrist Dr. Malin, you’ll likely first experience itching to one or both feet. Athlete’s foot can also cause a burning and stinging sensation along with a scaly rash. A fungal infection of the skin can be spread to other parts of the body if you touch your feet without washing your hands.
As a fungal infection, athlete’s foot does not stay on just the skin. Untreated infection can spread to other areas, most commonly affecting the toenails. Thick, yellow, crumbling toenails can be a sign of a nail fungal infection. At her office in Columbia, Dr. Malin treats these types of infections every day.
Perhaps the most alarming issue with ignoring athlete’s foot is that it’s easy to spread to other people. Just as you picked it up from somewhere, you can leave fungal spores behind everywhere you go. These can then go on to infect family or friends. Athletes that ignore a fungal infection can put teammates at risk as well.
If you have athlete’s foot and are looking for a podiatrist in Columbia, TN, contact Dr. Danielle Malin at Premier Foot & Ankle Care. While this might be an embarrassing condition for you, trust that this is a common condition that is treatable with prescription medication.