Why Does Your Athlete's Foot Keep Coming Back?

Michelle Hopkins

Athlete's foot can be a struggle to get rid of. You think you have it under control when it returns with a vengeance, causing itching and pain between your toes. Usually, if your athlete's foot keeps returning, it means you are not treating it quite properly. Here are a few changes you might need to make to your treatment protocol to get rid of the fungus for good:

Use your anti-fungal cream for longer.

Do you stop putting on your anti-fungal cream the day that symptoms seem to subside? You may be ending treatment too soon, allowing the remaining fungi the opportunity to replicate and re-infect your foot. Try continuing to use the anti-fungal cream for a few days after your symptoms disappear completely. 

Change your socks more often.

If you leave your socks on for too long, the fungi may work their way into the socks where they're a bit more protected from your anti-fungal treatment. Try changing your socks every three or four hours during the day. Each time you change your socks, apply a new layer of anti-fungal cream. Make sure you launder your socks in bleach after every use, as this will kill the fungi and keep you from re-infecting your feet.

Let your feet breathe.

Sometimes, getting rid of athlete's foot can be nearly impossible if you are wearing shoes all day. You probably don't want to show off your infected feet, but wearing sandals or other open-toed shoes will help you heal so much faster. The fungi that cause athlete's foot thrive in a warm, moist environment, and wearing open shoes keeps your toes dryer and cooler. Try keeping sandals under your desk and changing into them once you get to work. You can slip your normal shoes back on if you have an important meeting, or to get lunch with coworkers.

Sanitize your shower and sheets.

You may be re-infecting your feet every time you come into contact with your shower floor, or perhaps even your bed sheets. Launder your sheets in bleach, and also bleach the bottom of your shower. This will kill the fungi and help prevent re-infection. (It will also prevent others in your home from contracting athlete's foot.)

If you continue to struggle with athlete's foot after following these tips, reach out to a podiatrist or your medical doctor for treatment. They may recommend a stronger prescription treatment. Check out a website like http://familyfootanklephysicians.com/ for more information and assistance.