Athlete's foot resolves without medication (resolves by itself) in 30–40% of cases.Topical antifungal medication consistently produce much higher rates of cure. Conventional treatment typically involves thoroughly washing the feet daily or twice daily, followed by the application of a topical medication. Because the outer skin layers are damaged and susceptible to reinfection, topical treatment generally continues until all layers of the skin are replaced, about 2–6 weeks after symptoms disappear.

athletes foot

Treating Athletes Foot

Keeping feet dry and practicing good hygiene is crucial for killing the fungus and preventing reinfection. Treating the feet is not always enough. Once socks or shoes are infested with fungi, wearing them again can reinfect the feet. Socks can be effectively cleaned in the wash by adding bleach.

To be effective, treatment includes all infected areas. Otherwise, the infection may continue to spread, including back to treated areas. For example, leaving fungal infection of the nail untreated, may allow it to spread back to the rest of the foot, to become athlete's foot once again.

Severe or prolonged fungal skin infections may require treatment with oral antifungal medication.The fungal infection may be treated with topical antifungal agents, which can take the form of a spray, powder, cream, or gel. Topical application of an antifungal cream once daily for two weeks is effective in most cases of athlete's foot.

If you feel you might have Athlete's foot, call a podiatrist to get your feet clear and healthy.

Brad Schaeffer, D.P.M.
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Dr. Brad Schaeffer is an expert in foot and ankle pain, treatment and surgery. Learn more about our doctor.
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