Athlete’s foot remedies run the gamut between home remedies and strong prescription drugs. One natural remedy that is consistently touted by athlete’s foot sufferers as being highly effective is vinegar. The pantry staple has been used successfully by many of those affected with the tenacious foot fungus.
Tinea pedis is the medical term for athlete’s foot; it’s a common fungal infection of the skin on the feet. The fungus that causes athlete’s foot can be transferred from person to person through contact with infected clothing or surfaces. Athlete’s foot fungus thrives in moist, warm areas. Many people pick up the condition from locker rooms, gyms or community swimming pools. Some people are more resistant to athlete’s foot than others, but the majority of the population will experience a bout of it at some point in their lives.
Athlete’s foot symptoms can range from mild to severe. In mild cases, the skin on the bottom of the foot may look dry or peel slightly. More severe cases cause itching and burning and may involve the skin in between the toes. The most severe cases of the disease can cause blistering and bleeding of the skin.
Athlete’s foot fungus can’t thrive in an acidic environment. That’s where vinegar comes into play. Vinegar is acidic; regularly soaking your feet in a vinegar solution will cure most cases of athlete’s foot over time.
- Fill a large container with 1 part white vinegar to 4 parts lukewarm water.
- Soak your feet for 20 minutes 2 times per day.
- Dry the feet well with paper towels and dispose of immediately.
Others have had success with applying straight vinegar onto the foot with a cotton ball, letting it sit for a few minutes, then rinsing afterwards. Although this is a quicker procedure, you have to be careful that you don’t over irritate the skin.
It may take months for the vinegar treatment to completely eradicate the athlete’s foot. Although you may see results right away, it’s important to continue until all signs of the disorder are gone. You can also use the vinegar soaks in adjunct to treatment with over the counter or prescription athlete’s foot creams. Consult your health care provider to make sure there are no contraindications.
The best weapon in athlete’s foot prevention is to keep the feet clean and dry. Wear breathable cotton socks and change them regularly. It’s a good idea to sprinkle anti-fungal powder into your shoes on a weekly basis. You should also take time every day to remove your shoes and socks and allow your feet to breathe.
Remember to wear flip flops in public gyms and showers. Other public areas that may pose the danger of infection are nail salons. Unless you are completely certain that your salon uses proper sanitation methods, you should bring your own implements and ask that the technician use them for your service.