Effective home remedies for athlete's foot

Effective home remedies for athlete's foot

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Tips and instructions for self-treatment of athlete's foot

The article shows which home remedies for athlete's foot help. About thirty percent of Germans suffer from athlete's foot. It is a skin disease in which the affected areas itch, flake and sometimes also pain. In addition, the affected foot is not exactly beautiful to look at. The fungus is usually very stubborn, but there are many natural remedies that can relieve the symptoms. For this, however, these must be used regularly. If the athlete's foot occurs frequently and / or is difficult to treat, a doctor should be consulted promptly to clarify the cause.

Attention: You should pay attention to this with athlete's foot

Hygiene is the top priority for athlete's foot. So stockings and socks should be changed every day and only natural materials should be worn. Make sure your feet are dry. The footwear should be breathable and should never be exchanged with other people. As long as the athlete's foot is present, it is also contagious. You must therefore not walk barefoot. The disinfection showers installed everywhere in public bathrooms do not help, on the contrary, they support the spread of athlete's foot.


At the beginning of an illness, there are usually hardly any or no complaints. The mushroom needs some time to settle properly. Dandruff and blistering between the toes is often the first sign. A reddish, itchy rash forms between the toes and the soles of the feet, which wets and hurts.

Unfortunately, the fungus can also spread to the nails. The nail turns yellowish, it becomes thicker and more crumbly. This is not only unattractive to look at, but also very unpleasant and increasingly difficult to treat as the process progresses. The earlier treatment is started, the easier it is to defeat the athlete's foot.

Home remedies for external treatment

A simple, easy-to-use home remedy is apple cider vinegar. Daily washes relieve itching and inflammation.

The spaces between the toes can be rubbed with cut garlic. The most effective way to use it overnight is to pack your feet in cotton socks after the treatment. If there is no garlic on hand, a sliced ​​onion can serve as an alternative.

Sprinkling the mushroom-infested regions with food baking soda - also called baking soda - helps against moisture in the feet and strengthens the protective layer of the skin. It is helpful if some of it is strewn into your socks or shoes every day - especially if they are worn barefoot.

St. John's wort is said to have good effects on both mental and external injuries. Daily rubbing with this oil can provide relief for athlete's foot. A simple home remedy is honey. This is known to help with inflammation. So he has his area of ​​application here too.

Natural treatment with herbal tea

A foot bath with black tea relieves the uncomfortable itching and pain. The tannin in tea is able to kill the fungus. For this, five to six tea bags are placed in a large bowl or tub, poured with a liter of hot water and left to stand for 15 minutes. Now keep your feet in the bathroom for about half an hour. Dabbing with a tea bag several times a day can also provide relief.

Alternatively, a vermillion or oak bark decoction can help. Both teas contain tannins, which can counter inflammation. For the decoction, make about two to three tablespoons with a quarter liter of water and cook for about half an hour. After straining, the affected skin areas can be dabbed with it, preferably several times a day.

Effective means of internal treatment

If athlete's foot is common and difficult to treat, a doctor should be consulted. Diseases such as diabetes, circulatory disorders and possible candidiasis must be clarified.

The immune system is usually not completely intact when athlete's foot becomes a constant problem. Home remedies attack here that strengthen the immune system from the inside. A healthy, wholesome and above all vitamin-rich diet is the basis for a good immune system. But often this is no longer enough and the organism also needs vitamins, minerals and trace elements.

Sea buckthorn, for example, is a fruit that contains a high level of vitamin C. As a fruit spread or mixed in milk or juice, this is not only tasty, but also strengthens the immune system. Regularly consumed elderberry can also give the immune system a positive kick. It is best to drink a glass of elderberry juice every day for a longer period of time. The body needs enzymes to ward off inflammation. These support and accelerate the metabolic processes. Fruits such as papaya, mango and pineapple are the suitable foods here to supply these important enzmye to the body.

A healthy intestine ensures a healthy immune system. Since a large part of the immune cells are produced and resident in the intestine, this is the point of attack in order to remain healthy. Dysbiosis, in which there is an imbalance in the bacteria in the large intestine, could result in a wide variety of diseases, including athlete's foot. In this case, an intestinal restoration is indicated, which of course belongs in the hands of a doctor or alternative practitioner.

But also at home there are good tips for intestinal rehabilitation, which are ideal for preparation and support. These include natural colon cleansing with psyllium husks, the use of bitter plants and wild herbs and a cure with healing earth. We recommend a high-fiber diet, lactic acid vegetables and one or two unsweetened natural yoghurts with right-handed lactic acid daily. Because this form of nutrition helps the intestine to become healthy again and can therefore perform a good defense.

Essential oils for athlete's foot

Essential oils are among the easy-to-use but effective home remedies. For athlete's foot, lavender, myrrh, peppermint and tea tree are suitable. These oils have an antifungal, disinfectant and antiseptic effect. The principle of “less is more” applies. Purely, the oils should only be used in very small amounts. Dabbing the affected areas with a drop of the selected oil is sufficient.

To avoid drying out, mixing with a so-called "carrier oil" is preferable. A good, cold-pressed oil (e.g. olive or almond oil) is mixed with the essential oil and dabbed the affected areas. A drop of essential oil is added to about twenty milliliters of carrier oil. Mixing the different essential oils can enhance the effect. It is important to pay attention to good quality and purity when buying.

The essential oils can also work in a foot bath. For example, a few drops are mixed with a little cream or butter and added to the prepared water.

Foot bath with tea tree oil
  • Put 5 to 10 drops of pure tea tree oil in a bowl of warm water
  • Soak your feet in it for about 10 minutes a day

Alternating footbaths to improve blood circulation

In order to successfully treat athlete's foot disease, it is important to ensure good blood circulation in the feet. Exchangeable footbaths are particularly suitable for this. To enhance the effect, the baths can be supplemented with natural additives. Chamomile and oak bark are particularly recommended.

Alternating foot bath with oak bark
  1. Put 3 tablespoons of oak bark in a saucepan with a liter of boiling water
  2. Let the mixture boil for about half an hour and strain the bark
  3. Prepare a bowl of hot water and add the broth
  4. Next to it, place another bowl of cold water
  5. Now the feet are only bathed in the hot water for about 5 minutes
  6. Then immerse them in the other vessel for 10 seconds to cool
  7. The whole process is repeated twice, after which the feet should be thoroughly dried

Urine as a home remedy for athlete's foot

Everyone has heard of it before, but many shy away from using it - treatment with their own urine. In naturopathy, this is used more and more as a therapeutic agent. In order to treat athlete's foot, the areas are dabbed daily with the morning urine.

Athlete's foot: occurrence and transmission routes

Athlete's foot feels comfortable wherever it is damp and warm. Therefore, public swimming pools, saunas or showers are the suitable places where the fungus can spread well. There are now many home remedies for the disease, but not every remedy works equally well for every person. If the athlete's foot is very pronounced, stubborn and occurs frequently, a doctor should definitely be consulted to clarify possible causes such as diabetes.

The contagious thing is the spores of the dermatophytes (filamentous fungi), which sit on skin cells and can therefore be found everywhere on the floor. There are dangers lurking on carpets in hotels and changing rooms - but especially where it is damp. In public wet areas, on bath mats, but also in stockings and shoes, the fungal spores can survive for weeks.

The athlete's foot is carried away primarily by those affected who walk barefoot. Running without shoes and stumps on floors that are contaminated with spores is a risk of infection. The combination of moisture, warmth and softened skin is the ideal prerequisite for getting infected with athlete's foot. Many sufferers do nothing against the symptoms for a long time, which means that the contagious skin disease is spreading more and more.

What many do not know: athlete's foot is transferable through textiles and can therefore also be passed on from "stocking to stocking". The fungal spores can pass from infected clothing to other laundry items if they are close enough together. To avoid infection in your own four walls, socks and stockings from different family members should not be kept together if there is a known infection. It is also important to wash them at at least 60 ° C to safely kill the spores.

Not everyone is infected with athlete's foot

Despite the massive spread of athlete's foot, not everyone is infected with it. The skin represents a protective barrier for the body and, thanks to its protective acid mantle, has sufficient defense mechanisms. Spores can only penetrate if the skin is damaged. These are usually the smallest cracks in the skin - often hard to see with the naked eye.

People with extremely thin and dry skin are more likely to become infected. Diabetics, who have skin changes especially in the foot and leg area, often suffer from it. The diabetes disease (“diabetes”) may not yet be known, which is why those affected are repeatedly tormented by athlete's foot, which responds very poorly to any treatment. Therefore, in case of persistent, recurring infestations, a possible diabetes should be clarified.

Unsuitable footwear that has a synthetic interior, socks and stockings that are not made of natural materials - all of these can promote infection. As with all diseases, a well-functioning immune system is the be-all and end-all to ward off pathogens. This also applies to the dermatophytes. If the immune system is intact and the skin is in order, humans can migrate through fungal spores without becoming infected. If the defensive situation is not the best, the athlete's foot can spread quickly. An existing illness with the yeast Candida (Candidose) can lead, for example, to that the defense performance of the skin and the whole body is reduced.

Prevention: How to protect yourself from athlete's foot

Bathing shoes protect against infection. An increased risk can also arise from walking barefoot in the hotel room or in changing rooms. Young people like to exchange their shoes with each other. This should be avoided. The use of other towels or nail scissors is a taboo in the prevention of athlete's foot. The feet should always be kept dry. If there is a predisposition to a fungal infection, daily prevention with a good, cold-pressed sesame oil serves as a preventive measure, especially between the toes. (sw, nr)

Author and source information

This text corresponds to the specifications of the medical literature, medical guidelines and current studies and has been checked by medical doctors.

Susanne Waschke, Barbara Schindewolf-Lensch


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