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What are the Best Home Remedies for Athlete's Foot?

By B. Miller
Updated May 17, 2024
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Athlete's foot is a fungal infection that can cause the skin of the foot to peel or flake off. It can also cause itching or burning sensations on the feet, and is very contagious and easy to contract by going barefoot in gyms or locker rooms. For this reason, it is a good idea to always wear shoes such as flip-flops, and avoid going barefoot in any public places. Though a doctor may be able to prescribe treatments for athlete's foot, there are many home remedies for athlete's foot to try as well.

There are quite a few over-the-counter treatments for athlete's foot to be found in drugstores. Most come in cream or powder form, and should be applied to the feet once or twice a day after thoroughly washing them. These can be effective at killing the fungus that causes athlete's foot, as well as relieving the pain or itching associated with the condition.

Tea tree oil is another one of the best home remedies for athlete's foot. It may be applied to the feet diluted with water or full strength, but it has been shown to effectively kill fungus, and may be able to prevent it from returning with regular use. Eucalyptus oil and grapefruit seed extract may both have a similar effect, though tea tree oil tends to be recommended more often.

Soaking the feet daily in epsom salt is another one of the best home remedies for athlete's foot. After soaking, some people recommend sprinkling the feet with baking soda to keep them dry. If something appears to increase irritation, however, stop and try something else. Other effective home remedies for athlete's foot might include rubbing white vinegar or rubbing alcohol on the shoes to kill the fungus and prevent re-infection.

While using these home remedies for athlete's foot, it is still important to care for the feet to prevent the condition from getting worse. It is important to keep the feet clean and dry, so wash them thoroughly and be sure they are completely dry before putting any footwear on. Wear clean cotton socks and well ventilated shoes, and wear sandals or open shoes as much as possible to allow the feet to dry out. If the feet become sweaty or get wet, immediately take the shoes off, dry the feet, and reapply drying powder; the fungus that causes athlete's foot thrives in damp environments.

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