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How to Have Summer Fun (While Avoiding Fungal Infections)

Updated: Jul 29, 2020

We may be known as the Big Easy, but that doesn’t mean beating the heat and humidity is a simple matter in summertime. Finding a spot in the shade, taking a dip at the local pool, and moving quickly between air-conditioned spaces is a summer survival tactic.

In a climate like ours, the risk of fungal infections on the feet skyrocket during the summertime. Sweat-drenched shoes and socks provide a harbor for the kinds of micro-organisms that feast on skin and nails, causing athlete’s foot and fungal toenails. They also cling to surfaces like public pools, locker rooms, and showers, waiting to transfer to the next unsuspecting victim.

If you want to have your fun this summer without risking a nasty infection, ensure you make smart choices to protect your feet.

  1. Don’t go barefoot in public, ever. Even if you’re in a locker room or at the pool, put on a pair of shower shoes or sandals to better protect your skin from contact with fungi.

  2. Do, however, go barefoot at home (as long as you don’t have diabetes). This gives your feet a chance to dry out.

  3. Change your socks as often as necessary to prevent them from get water-logged. It helps to choose breathable, moisture-wicking fabrics.

  4. Choose shoes made from breathable fabrics that allow the heat and humidity to escape.

  5. Rotate between multiple pairs of shoes each day so that each gets a 24+ hour period to dry out.

  6. Apply antifungal powders or sprays to your feet and the inside of your shoes to kill any budding infections.

  7. If you’re going to the salon for a pedicure, ensure that your location of choice employs certified technicians and uses an autoclave to fully disinfect and sterilize all equipment between customers. You may also consider bringing your own tools for them to use.

We hope you’re looking forward to another hot and humid—but fun!—summer in 2017. If you do develop any infections or other issues with your skin and nails, please call Gulf South Foot & Ankle at (504) 708-4810 (for our Metairie office) or (985) 809-1464 for Covington.

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