Whitby Family Footcare Clinic

107-420 Green St. • Whitby, Ontario • L1N 8R1 905.668.8233

Athletes Foot

Athlete’s feet (tinea pedis) is a common skin infection that can affect everyone, not just athletes. Tinea pedis is caused by fungi. Fungi are simple parasitic plant organisms, such as molds and mildew. Fungi lack chlorophyll and do not require sunlight for growth. A group of fungi called dermatophytes has evolved to feed on the skin protein called keratin. Athlete’s foot may cause redness, itchiness, tiny bumps filled with fluid or peeling skin. It is most commonly located between the toes or on the bottom of the feet.

Fungi are commonly found throughout the environment. Fungi thrive in a warm, moist and dark environment. Footwear creates the warm and moist conditions between the toes that is the perfect environment for fungal growth on the skin. Fungal infections are easily passed from person to person in showers or bathing areas. It is difficult to avoid contact with microscopic organisms like fungi, the skin is especially vulnerable around damp areas where people are likely to be walking barefoot, such as, swimming pools, locker rooms, and showers. Injury to your skin makes it more susceptible to all types of infection, including fungal skin infections.