Feet and sneakers/fungus

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When I was looking at my Facebook feed this morning I noticed that a friend had posted this question:

How do you get rid of foot fungus?

He got a variety of answers from his friends, including

  • Apply tea tree oil at least twice daily to affected areas, keep feet dry & well-aired as much as possible (i.e. minimize time spent in thick socks and heavy shoes.)
  • Foot soaks with aloe and chlorella.
  • An apple cider vinegar soak.
  • Get rid of all infected shoes, bleach the tub/shower, scrub and dry feet after every shower and then apply clotrimazole with socks every night for a few weeks. Good luck! Been there.
  • Pee on your feet in the shower.
  • Start washing your damn feet!

I decided to see if I could help him out and asked a foot specialist — Dr. Michael C. Saraydarian, a podiatrist at Central Maine Orthopaedics in Auburn. Here’s his answer:

“The first course of action when treating foot fungus is topical care. Try to control the moisture levels your feet are exposed to by choosing shoes that breathe well, changing your socks a few times throughout the day and allowing as much exposed, fresh air time out of shoes and socks as possible when at home. 

Additionally, you may try using topical antifungal creams that can be purchased any grocery or drug store. One of the most common foot funguses is tinea pedis, more widely known as “Athlete’s Foot.”  This form of foot fungus usually responds well to at-home treatments, but if you have exhausted the aforementioned options and your fungus hasn’t been resolved you should call your primary care physician or speak with a podiatrist who can better diagnose your fungus and prescribe you a more aggressive oral antifungal medication.” – Michael C. Saraydarian, DPM, FACFAS