Athlete’s foot (medical name; tinea pedis) is an infectious skin condition of the foot. This type of infection is very commonly seen in athletes especially in swimmers hence, the name. The infection results from rapid multiplication of a certain type of fungi. This kind of infection is very common in athletes as well as in people with sweaty feet. Like mentioned earlier, athlete’s foot is an easily contagious disease and spreads rapidly under favorable environment. A person can get the infection through use of common bathrooms, public swimming pools, towels, clothes (including socks) and even shoes.
It is important to get treated for the condition as soon as possible or it can even result in amputation of the foot. There are several over-the-counter creams available for the treatment of this fungal infection. However, in this article we will disclose to you some of the best home remedies that are commonly used for the treatment of athlete’s foot. Like all remedies, the home remedies too take time to show effect. But one has to be very regular in their use or it can cause the infection to start all over again. Also, fungal infections need to be treated completely or the fungi will grow back.
Effective Home Remedies For Athlete’s Foot
1. Cornstarch Powder
If you have sweaty feet then cornstarch powder is will help prevent the growth of infection causing fungi on your feet. If you suffer from athlete’s foot then sprinkle the powder on your foot to keep it dry always. Fungi find it easier to grow and multiply when the skin is wet.
You can buy cornstarch powder from food store. Sprinkle the powder over your feet every two hours to keep them completely dry. You can even put some powder inside your socks and shoes to keep wetness away. Cornstarch will quickly absorb the sweat leaving your feet moisture free completely.Use brown cornstarch powder for treating athlete’s foot. If you cannot find brown cornstarch powder then lightly roast the white powder until it changes its color to brown. Take care not to burn the powder or it will become ineffective.
Garlic has known anti fungal properties that very helpful in restricting the growth of fungi. Regular application of garlic over the infected area will make you absolutely infection free. Take 5-6 pods of garlic. Peel the garlic pods and crush them properly using mortar and pestle. Apply the crushed garlic evenly over your infected foot. Wrap the infected and treated area with medical gauze so that the garlic remains in place. Leave for a couple of hours.
Wash your foot with warm water and medicated soap and dry it completely using a towel or hair dryer. It is important to not leave the infected area wet. Wait for an hour and then re-apply the garlic. This treatment should be done thrice a day. If you cannot do that for whatever reasons, then apply crushed garlic to your foot at night and leave it overnight. This treatment should be done every day for three months.
3. Apple Cider Vinegar
Apple cider vinegar is acidic in nature because it contains high amounts of acetic acid. This makes it very useful for eliminating infection causing bacteria and fungi. Treat your infected foot daily with apple cider vinegar bath. Prepare the bath by adding one cup of the vinegar to three cups of water.Pour the solution in a medium sized basin. Soak the infected foot in the solution for 15-20 minutes. Wash off using plain water and then dry the foot completely. Sprinkle some cornstarch over the foot to ensure complete absorption of moisture. Do this treatment thrice a day for 6 weeks.
4. Vicks VapoRub
This is a popular home remedy for treating many infections including athlete’s foot. Doctors believe that Vicks VapoRub is effective in treating infections because of the presence of menthol and eucalyptus oil. Whatever the reason, this is one of the simplest ways of getting rid of the fungi that cause athlete’s foot.Rub Vicks 3-4 times over the infected foot. This will sting a bit because of the ingredients used in the VapoRub. Do this regularly for 2-3 months until the infection disappears completely.
5. Sea Salt
Sea salts are regularly used in pedicures because of their anti-bacterial and anti-fungal properties. Sea salts are easily available in many beauty stores and as well as health stores. In a medium sized basin pour half a liter of water. Add one cup f sea salt to the water and mix.Soak your infected foot in this sea salt bath for 20 minutes. The salt is crystal in form; rub the crystals over the infection and in between the fingers of your foot for maximum benefit. Wash off using plain water. Dry well using hand dryer (set the dryer at ‘cool’ medium or you will burn your foot).
6. Indian Lilac (neem)
This is a tree very common to Asian countries. However, dried powder of the leaves of this tree is available in many health and beauty stores. The leaves of Indian lilac are anti-fungal ad anti-bacterial in nature. Therefore, they are effectively used for treating many skin conditions. Prepare a paste by combining three tablespoons of the powder of Indian lilac with sufficient quantity of water.
Apply this paste over the infected area and allow it to dry completely. Wash off using plain water. Do the treatment 4-5 times daily for 5 weeks. If you can lay your hands on fresh leaves of the tree then prepare the paste by crushing the leaves and mixing them with a little water. You can even soak the infected foot in a solution prepared by boiling fresh leaves in water.
Along with the above given remedies, it is important that you take good care of your personal hygiene to restrict the growth of the fungi. Use medicated soaps to wash the infected foot. Wear slippers if you have to bathe in common bathrooms. Do not let your feet remain wet for long. If you suffer from the infection then wash your clothes in very hot water and use a strong detergent to restrict the spread of infection.