Do your hide your tootsies out of shame? Do you wish you could wear those beautiful sandals but fear people will cringe at the state of your feet?
There are some foot-care issues that even a pedicure can’t fix, so if you find yourself suffering from toe fungus, never fear, there is help at hand!
Nobody particularly likes feet, but we need them for everyday movement and function, so there’s really nothing we can do about that part; what we can do something about however is that embarrassing and unpleasant issue of athlete’s foot or a fungal nail infection.
What Causes Toe Fungus?
Toe fungus is caused by poor foot hygiene practices, so the good news is that if you can recognise this and correct it, you are on the fast track to solving the problem. The main two issues that you may be affected by are not serious, but they can be unpleasant, and again, there’s that words, embarrassing, especially during the summer months when you are forced to get your feet out into the fresh air.
What Does Foot Fungus Look Like?
Athlete’s foot presents itself as a rash which appears between the toes, with scaly, cracked, and itchy skin as a result. When left untreated, this can spread to the toenails and cause a fungal nail infection, which shows up as discoloured, misshaped, and quite unpleasant looking toenails – painting them a pretty colour is not going to solve this problem.
The medical name for a fungal nail infection is onychomycosis, and athlete’s foot is more scientifically known as tinea pedis.
Both conditions are caused by similar situations:
- Wearing closed in shoes which cause the feet to become overly warm and sweat, such as trainers or sneakers
- Not cleaning or drying the feet properly
- Walking barefoot in places where fungus is likely to thrive, such as a swimming pool changing room, gym, etc
- A weakened immune system overall
Basically, fungi like warm, dark, and moist places – enter your feet.
How to Treat Foot Fungus
Try a natural remedy like a tea tree and orange oil rub
Tea tree oil is a natural disinfectant, which has fungicidal & anti-bacterial properties. Orange oil has also shown promising results when it comes to getting rid of fungus, and should be added to the rub.
What you need:
- 1 teaspoon of tea tree oil
- 1/2 teaspoon of orange oil
- 2 teaspoon of grape seed oil
- Cotton balls
How to Use:
- Mix together all three oils
- Soak a cotton ball in the mixture
- Apply to the nail pressing down firmly so the liquid comes out
- Let this dry naturally
- Do this morning and night
Another option is to use an anti-fungal foot and body wash like this one which is made with therapeutic grade essential oils. It’s infused with tea tree oil & four additional essential oils proven to kill fungus and bacteria (made in the USA & not tested on animals)
If the problem is severe you should head to the nearest pharmacy and ask advice; you will be given creams or sprays like these, which need to be applied to the area a few times per day (as per instruction).
On top of this, however, good foot hygiene should always be followed, which includes:
- Keep feet clean and dry – always dry your feet properly, in particular between the toes, after a bath or shower
- Never wear socks twice – always wear clean, dry socks
- Wear open-toed shoes as much as possible for air to circulate
- Keep toenails short and well maintained
- Avoid perfumed foot lotions
- Never walk around barefoot in public places, e.g. gyms or swimming pool areas
While foot fungus issues can be embarrassing; we’re not going to deny, it is something which affects everyone at some point in their life, so it’s not something to despair about too much. Yes, it can be unpleasant and yes, there is that ‘yuck’ factor, but treat it quickly and keep your feet healthy, and you shouldn’t have a recurrence to worry about.