The treatment of athlete's foot can be difficult when the condition is severe and has been neglected. However, in the initial stages of the disorder, the treatment is satisfactory. The first drugs of choice for the mild cases of Athlete's foot are topical medications.
Topical medications: Topical medications are usually the first choice of therapy for mild athlete's foot. There are numerous non prescription and prescription topical products available. The medications are available as sprays, lotions, powders and ointments.
The most commonly used topical medications include:
- Terbinafine (Lamisil AT)
- Clotrimazole (Lotrimin AF)
- Miconazole (Micatin)
- Salicylic acid
- Whitfield's ointment
Other topical products that have been reported to work for athlete's foot include:
- Castellani's Paint
- Carbol Fuscin Red dye
- Gentian violet
Reports of the efficacy of these products are anecdotal and scant.
The topical medications only work if other general measures are undertaken.
- keep the feet and toes dry
- wear proper shoes or sandals
- apply a medicated powder every night to compliment the topical medication
- wear proper socks
- avoid moist and humid environments
Most mild cases of athlete's foot can be cured with the use of a nonprescription topical antifungal medication. Most individuals will see some improvement within 1-2 weeks. However, treatment should be continued for at least 3-4 weeks to ensure that all fungus has been eradicated. A complete response sometimes takes at least 2 months of therapy. In severe cases, less than 10-20% of individuals show any response to topical medications.
Diabetics who develop fungal infections should see a physician before embarking on any therapy.