Fungal infections may be spread by physical contact with another person who is infected or by contact with fungi on objects or in certain environments. Most fungi thrive in warm, damp environments such as locker rooms and communal showers. If you are seeking treatment or medical advice, be sure to prepare yourself before your appointment.

Which Fungal Infection Do You Have?

There are several types of fungal infections of the skin. Athlete's foot, jock itch, ringworm and yeast infections are common types. If you can provide insight as to which fungal infection you believe you have, it may save time in diagnosis, although most skincare professionals are able to diagnose fungal infections relatively quickly. Athlete's foot affects the feet and may cause peeling or cracking of the feet, as well as itching and burning. Jock itch commonly affects the thigh, buttocks and groin areas and may include itching and chafing, as well as redness around the affected area. Ringworm is not caused by a worm, but appears in a circular shape and may be found along with flaky skin. It may be raised around the edges, but is usually flat in the middle. Ringworm may affect any area of the body. Yeast infection on the skin may be found on all areas of the body and may be accompanied by rash, itching, burning and pimples.

What Are Your Symptoms?

Before your appointment, write down your symptoms. This may be helpful in diagnosis, but may also aid the skincare professional in recommending certain treatments or over-the-counter products. Try to remember when symptoms first appeared and if you were in any locker rooms, communal showers, public pools or had contact with anybody who may have had a fungal infection. Sharing socks, shoes, bed sheets, towels or other personal items may spread fungal infections, so try to remember if any of these risk factors apply to you.

Make a List of Questions

During your appointment, make sure that you ask plenty of questions. A skincare professional is the best resource for information pertaining to fungal infections so you'll want to take advantage of the opportunity to ask questions. Common questions include:
•    What may have caused my fungal infection?
•    How can I avoid spreading the infection to others?
•    What treatments may provide relief?
•    Are over-the-counter products effective in fighting fungal infections?
Also make sure to ask some of your own questions, and be prepared to answer the skincare professional's questions as well.