Summer is approaching which means it is time to dust off those flip flops in your closet and let your feet breathe some fresh air after a long winter! A common skin infection that a lot of people come in contact with, especially in the summer, is athlete’s foot. While you should enjoy the warm weather, you should also take some precautions.

Athlete’s foot is a common fungal infection that affects the soles of your feet and in between your toes. Some of the side effects of athlete’s foot are an itching and burning sensation of the skin which can lead to oozing and scaling of the skin.

Here are a few common places where people contract athlete’s foot;

  1. Swimming pools
  2. Locker rooms
  3. Nail salons

The reason why these types of places are so popular for fungi to grow is because of the moist environment within. Your feet need to be able to breathe at a comfortable temperature and if they are prone to collecting moisture, it allows the fungus to develop. In some cases, the infection can even spread to a person’s hands, groin and other parts of the body.

So how can you prevent athlete’s foot?

  1. Keep your feet dry. Make sure you have cotton socks and shoes that allow your feet to breathe properly and be aired out.
  2. Disinfect. Anti-fungal foot powders can be bought at any local drug store and should be sporadically sprinkled into your shoes.
  3. Avoid walking in bare feet. Not every place is infested with fungi that can cause athlete’s foot, but you should take extra precautions when walking barefoot in public places such as those listed above; swimming pool areas, locker rooms, etc.
  4. Nail care. If you happen to get be getting your nails done at a salon, try bringing your own nail care with you. This limits your chances of coming in contact with dirty tools that may not have been cleaned properly.
  5. Avoid others who already have the infection. Since athlete’s foot is contagious, try to avoid any contact with those who have it.