Athlete's foot may seem like a minor inconvenience that can be treated with over-the-counter ointments, but there are several good reasons to visit your podiatrist if you suspect that you have athlete's foot. This fungal infection can spread to other areas of your body, and it can also be difficult to get rid of on your own. Your podiatrist can help you to diagnose and cure the athlete's foot to get your feet feeling great again. Here are just a few reasons why this condition may require the care of a doctor.
Get The Proper Diagnosis
While it may seem like you have athlete's foot, there are several other conditions that present with similar symptoms. These may include psoriasis, bacterial infections or dyshidrotic eczema. Your podiatrist can make the proper diagnosis and offer appropriate treatments for each condition. He or she may take a skin sample to have it analyzed at a laboratory, which can help to determine exactly what is going on with your feet and skin. If you have complications, such as bleeding or oozing between the toes or at the initial site of the fungal infection, your podiatrist will be able to determine if you have a secondary infection that requires additional treatment.
Proper Medication Choices
There are many over-the-counter options for treating athlete's foot, but more severe cases may require prescription ointments or oral medications. Your podiatrist can select the proper prescription medications and check for any drug interactions with medications you are already taking. In addition, some creams, such as corticosteroids, may actually worsen your athlete's foot. Whether you have a mild or severe case, your podiatrist will be able to help you find the right treatment option for your particular situation.
Athlete's foot may be accompanied by swelling, redness or bleeding. If you experience any of these symptoms, you'll need the care of a physician. Additionally, if you have diabetes, you may require more specialized care and treatment due to your condition. In some cases, athlete's foot may present along with a fungal nail infection, which requires additional treatment. Your podiatrist will examine both of your feet and take a detailed medical history to ensure you get the right level of care for your feet and any other conditions that may interfere with typical treatment options.
Athlete's foot should be treated like any other medical condition. With the care of the podiatrist, you can clear up the fungal infection and get on the road to healthy feet. For more information, consider contacting a professional like Klein Stanley Jay DPM.