Athlete’s Foot: A fungal or yeast infection of the outer layers of skin.
Symptoms: Appears as white superficial flaking of the skin or red itchy lesions. Appears in-between the toes or in the arch where moisture is the highest.
Cause: The moist environment of the foot is a perfect breeding ground for fungus.
Treatment: Over the counter medications initially. Even when symptoms disappear, continue to use the medication for two weeks. If the condition persists, a prescription medication may be necessary.
Prevention: Change your socks and shoe gear more frequently, use foot powders and sprays to keep your feed dry. In public locker rooms and showers, wear sandals. If excessive perspiration persists, medical treatment will be of great benefit.
Black Toenail: Blood blister underneath the toenail. (Subungual hematoma)
Symptoms: Discolored black toenail that may or may not be painful.
Cause: Bruising that occurs when you bump your toe against your shoes or more direct trauma like hitting the end table with your little toe or dropping something on your foot.
Treatment: Keep it clean and bandaged. If pain persists see a Podiatrist for treatment..
Prevention: Shoe gear that is wide and long enough so that your toes do not bump into the shoe. Also, do not drop anything on your foot.
Blister: An accumulation of fluid in-between the outer layers of skin.
Symptoms: Swelling and redness at a pressure point.
Cause: Friction caused by poorly fitting socks and shoes.
Treatment: Sterilize the area, and prick the bottom edge, the one towards the ground, with a needle. Drain the fluid, but leave the loose outer skin edge. Cover with a sterile bandage.
Prevention: Proper fitting shoes, and if a chronic problems, wear two pairs of socks to reduce friction on the feet.
Corns & Calluses: A thickening of skin
Symptoms: Discomfort when the thickened skin presses on underlying bony enlargements or nerves.
Cause: Pressure or irritation to the skin.
Treatment: Soak the involved foot and rub the thickened skin with a pumice stone to reduce the thickness. Padding to the involved area can help to reduce the pressure.
Prevention: Properly fitting shoe gear. Poor foot function can cause corns and callouses and an orthotic device (shoe insert) is helpful to correct the biomechanical problem.
Fungus Nails: A fungi and/or yeast infection of the nail, “athletes foot of the nail.”
Symptoms: The nail slowly becomes discolored and thickens.
Cause: The foot being in a dark, moist environment are perfect breeding grounds for fungus.
Treatment: Shoes with a wide toe box to prevent friction. Cutting the nail by a medical specialist when is becomes too thick. New oral antifungal therapy is promising; you may be a candidate for this treatment.
Prevention: Change socks and shoe gear more frequently, use foot powders and sprays to keep feet dry. In public locker rooms and showers, wear sandals.
Ingrown Nail: The side of a toenail cutting into the adjacent skin.
Symptoms: Pain, redness and possible drainage from the side of the involved toe.
Cause: Tight shoe gear, improper cutting of toe nails and sometimes the way your foot functions.
Treatment: Soak the involved foot and apply a small wedge of cotton in-between the nail and the skin. If symptoms persist more than three days, seek medical care.
Prevention: Properly fitting shoe gear. If the problem is chronic, permanent removal of a portion of the involved nail may be necessary.
Wart: A viral induced skin growth.
Symptoms: A skin growth that gets larger with time and has little black dots in it.
Cause: No, touching a frog had nothing to do with it. The human papilloma virus enters a break in your skin and grows.
Treatment: Over the counter wart preparations can be used for small warts. Warts larger than a pencil eraser head usually require removal by a doctor.
Prevention: Use foot powders and sprays to keep your feet dry. In public locker rooms and showers, wear sandals.