Athletic Foot Problems: The Problem with Having Skin in the Game

Basketball hoopHouston NBA fans were delighted when Rockets’ stars Dwight Howard and James Harden were selected for this year’s All-Star Game. People in over two hundred countries watched the big game, and fans across the city gathered to cheer on these local representatives. Howard and Harden likely enjoyed the experience as well, but it’s possible they left New Orleans with more than they expected.


Locker rooms and showers are the perfect place for bacteria and fungi to thrive. Imagine the All-Star team of fourteen—that’s 28 bare feet on one floor! Each step can leave behind microorganisms that need only a small crack in the skin to enter the body.


There are a variety of skin infections that can lead to athletic foot problems, and athlete’s foot is one of the most common. This fungal infection requires a dark, damp place to grow, and an athletic shoe offers both in abundance. Sweaty feet and sweaty socks equal sweaty shoes—the perfect place for fungi to breed. You should seek help as soon as symptoms arise, since they are sometimes difficult to treat.


Other, more serious conditions can use the feet as a point of entry as well. For instance, a serious form of staph known as MRSA can lead to painful sores that are difficult to address, since they don’t respond to most antibiotics. This infection only needs a small entry point on the feet or toes to develop into a full-blown condition.


How can you avoid athletic foot problems of the skin? First, protect your feet by wearing flip-flops in the locker room and shower. Keep your feet as dry as possible when you play, and examine your feet often for any signs of trouble. Finally, call Austin Foot and Ankle Specialists today for an appointment. Our sports injuries experts, Dr. Craig H. Thomajan DPM, FACFAS and Dr. Shine John DPM, FACFAS, will help keep your feet in the game! Call (512) 328-8900, or schedule an appointment online.


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Dr. Shine John, DPM, FACFAS
Podiatric Physician, Surgeon, Specialist at Austin Foot and Ankle Specialists
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