What causes it?
Athlete’s foot is a type of fungus. This fungus, which is part of the family also associated with ailments like jock itch and ringworm, survives best in warm, moist habitats such as showers, locker rooms, and public pools. It then makes its home on the human body to thrive on a steady diet of keratin, a protein found in hair, nails, and skin.
While even the most cautious person can become afflicted with athlete’s foot, certain behaviors pose a particularly high risk and should be avoided. Going barefoot in public places, especially those with warm, moist environments, can expose the feet to athlete’s foot, as can sharing socks, shoes, and towels. Having wet or sweaty feet, especially if confined in tight shoes, can also welcome the fungus.