Tag Archives: infection

Take Precautions Against Tinea Pedis

Woman listening to music with her feet propped up

Exercise is one of those things that we cannot genuinely go without. The human body evolved under circumstances that required fairly consistent movement to find the necessary foods to survive. It helped to shape everything from the tastes we value to the rate at which our metabolisms work on average. Despite our cultural and technological advancements, our bodies are still quite solidly back in the hunter-gatherer era and expect a certain level of movement. Our bodies suffer if we don’t get it. Overcoming the initial hurdles to exercise such as the difficulty in starting and maintaining motivation can be difficult, but once you do it the rewards tend to help you keep going. Admittedly, it does start creating circumstances where tinea pedis, more commonly known as athlete’s foot, will affect us. Taking precautions against that can ensure we get our exercise without dealing with an uncomfortable condition.

Socks Are Your Friends
One of the easiest ways you can minimize your chances of athlete’s foot is simply to wear socks. These seemingly easy to overlook articles of clothing provide a barrier between your skin and contact with various kind of bacteria that can end up leading to athlete’s foot. Wearing socks most of the time will provide you with two kinds of protection. The one we’ve already covered helps by ensuring you don’t accidentally pick up bacteria from the floor of your home or another interior area where you’re walking around without shoes. Additionally, socks offer a good way to draw moisture away from your feet. Keeping your feet from being habitually moist helps to stop them from providing an environment that supports the growth of the bacteria responsible for athlete’s foot. As a result, socks are a wonderful way to protect your feet. The reasons for this all point to another good habit to cultivate to help you avoid experiencing athlete’s foot.

Woman drying feet after a bath

Dry Your Feet
Damp feet are a major risk factor for athlete’s foot. As we highlighted above, it relates back to the fact that a damp environment helps support bacteria growth. Most of the time we’re not going to have terribly damp feet as long as we’re wearing socks, but certain circumstances do create that situation. The most common one is getting out of the shower or bath. Not only are our feet damp, but the room tends to be damp as well and a lot of the time we’re going to be barefoot. This makes the bathroom a very clear place one can pick up athlete’s foot. Another one is a pool and the changing rooms or bathrooms. The entire area is once again damp and promotes bacteria growth. Pools tend to be a bit more egregious about this than bathrooms though given how many people will be walking around. Try to remember to fully dry your feet when getting out of the shower or pool for this very reason. It will support the health of your feet.

Wear Shoes That Breathe
In continuing with the theme of avoiding damp feet, make sure that you wear shoes that permit at least some airflow over your feet. Air flow is important as it helps to further reduce the chance that your feet will be damp. Drier feet are less likely to be a problem. Additionally, this simply makes shoes more comfortable overall. It is worth noting that sandals and similar shoes are even better thanks to the greater level of air flow. The fact that they are also exposed to the sun doesn’t hurt either. We do need to stress that most of these benefits do hinge on you wearing socks in addition to the shoes. Remember that the interior of your shoes can end up damp or pick up bacteria too. Even the surfaces of sandals can end up being a problem quite easily. Without clean socks, your feet are potentially exposed and you will have to deal with the consequences.

Athlete’s foot is a very common worry and yet typically shouldn’t be a big issue in clean environments. If you regularly clean your bathroom, you probably won’t pick it up there. The biggest worry is typically just avoiding your feet being damp for too long. Even if you do get athlete’s foot, it isn’t that hard to treat. It is always worth taking precautions to avoid a simple problem though. You’ll be all the happier for the effort and your life will be far less disrupted.

Common Causes of Eye Inflammation and Irritation

Woman rubbing eye

There are plenty of common health problems that can bother us all. The cold is one of the most famous ones simply because it seems like there’s no way to truly escape it. After all, all our efforts just seem to delay when we start coughing and sneezing and that’s if we’re lucky. Similarly, sunburn, the sniffles, and all these little problems are just part of the human experience. The little annoyances are things that we can all share with one another. Our eyes getting irritated or inflamed are another one of these shared experiences. It can also end up being one of the most annoying and frustrating ones as well. After all, it tends to be a little painful thanks to the sensitivity of the eye and fixing the problem can end up being troublesome for those of us fond of makeup. It does help to be aware of some of the common causes of this sort of thing though as you can then take steps to protect your eyes. Let’s take a quick look at some of them.

Debris
This is the only most of us end up leaping to whenever we see our eyes looking a little red or feeling one in pain. The idea that something must be in one’s eye makes intuitive sense and is a good first step to address. “Debris” encompasses a lot of potential culprits though. Stray eyelashes, particulate matter, and anything else you can think of that might blow into and affect the eye tends to fall into this category. The general idea is simply foreign matter touching the sensitive surface of the eye. You can generally figure this one out relatively easily with large debris. It tends to be visible and able to be removed if you’re careful. You can also flush your eyes with water to help clear them our as well. This is typically your best option when you’re dealing with finer dust and particles that you can’t actually “pick” out of your eyes. Irritation in this case tends to radiate out from the spot where the debris got caught too. As a result, this problem is easy to solve.

Allergies
Pollen can technically fall under debris, in some cases, but most of the time it is going to be a less direct effect. Allergies a problem for almost everyone. If there’s a sufficient concentration of pollen in the air, it doesn’t matter if you “don’t have any allergies” as you’ll likely still be feeling it. Allergies affect us in varying ways with various kinds of irritation and inflammation to the eyes being relatively common. The level of irritation and inflammation is going to vary depending on the severity of the allergy though. Most of the time you’ll likely just experience a little redness and itchiness, but sometimes it can become a full reaction. You can end up with swollen and watery eyes on top of all that. The good news is, as with debris, this problem is relatively easily solved by taking an antihistamine or using antihistamine eye drops. These will generally soothe the problem away and let you return to going about your business.

Infection
We generally don’t think much about eye infections until the words “pink eye” come in up conversation. Those words alone are enough to strike fear into the hearts of parents and office workers alike. There are plenty of other kinds of eye infection though. Most of these come from accidental exposure to an unwelcome bacteria. The exact symptoms tend to vary, but they tend to result in redness and irritation as with most things that bother your eyes. Infections are resistant to most other treatments though and end up requiring you to go to your doctor. You can also expect symptoms to progress. That’s why we strongly urge you to always take the time to make sure to make the appointment with your doctor if irritation in an eye is not going away as it could lead to permanent damage of the eye if you’re not careful. Fortunately, these infections tend to be difficult to spread if they aren’t pink eye. Following whatever treatment your doctor prescribes and doing you best not to touch your eyes will help you recover from this sort of problem.

Inflamed and irritated eyes are pain, yes, but the most common issues are relatively easy to treat. They simply require you to address them appropriately. Medication, antihistamines, or even just washing out your eyes can be all it takes to ease irritation and inflammation. Just try to figure out what’s causing the problem and approach it properly. You should be able to get back to seeing just fine without any nagging irritations easily enough.

Consider These Hair Removal Risks Before You Tweeze

Woman tweezing eyebrows

Tweezing is a useful way to get rid of unwanted hairs. It removes them, makes them take longer to return, and entirely clears the area without there being any tell-tale sign the hair is there. It isn’t that different from any other form of plucking ultimately. Most of us end up tweezing at one point in our lives if not another. After all, keeping eyebrows perfectly shaped takes work. However, many of us also end up plucking stray hairs as we age. This is particularly common for many people past menopause. As useful as tweezing is in general, it does come with the same potential problems as all of its siblings. That means you’ll likely want to be aware of the potential problems before you start. We would like to stress that only some of these are particularly likely as long as you’re taking good care of your skin, but they do need to be listed for the sake of completeness. Let’s start with the most common problem.

Facing the Pain
No matter whether you call it tweezing, plucking, or threading, the process of physically removing hairs from your skin is a bit painful. The initial pulling gets easier over time as you adapt to the burst of pain associated with it, but that pain is still aggravating your skin. You should expect at least a degree of irritation from tweezing. This is generally going to be highly localized around the area where you pull the hair out as you’re ripping it out root and all. That necessarily causes a little damage. Most of the time the irritation will fade in a relatively short amount of time afterward. Sometimes it doesn’t though. This can be due to one having sensitive skin or an underlying condition continuing the inflammation even after the initial burst from the tweezing itself is done. This potential to trigger an underlying condition from the pain is one of the other issues, but most people will know if that is a potential problem for them or not.

A Chance of Infection
Remember that part about how tweezing involves ripping hairs out by the root? That can cause you other problems depending on the extent of the damage done by the process. Most of the time you’ll largely be dealing with superficial pain and inflammation that will vanish quickly, but sometimes you’ll get a drop of blood in the area as well. This is a sign that you’ve caused a deeper amount of damage and opened up the potential for infection as you’ll have given things a free pass into your skin. In essence, the area around the damaged follicle become infected by outside bacteria that begin to trigger a deeper form of inflammation in the skin. This is known a folliculitis and can result in visible skin issues sometimes mistaken for acne as well as the potential for tenderness to the touch. Bad cases of folliculitis can even lead to scarring of the skin. Don’t panic if you see a bit of blood while tweezing though! Just remember to wash your skin each day and you should be fine.

Ingrown Problems
One of the other risks involved in tweezing is that, in damaging the root, you risk causing a permanent change in how the hair grows. It may no longer grow smoothly as it should and too much variation can lead to ingrown hairs. These can be a literal and metaphorical pain depending on how deep they are when they become evident. Localized pain, tenderness to the touch, and obvious inflammation can all result from an ingrown hair. You can also end up with a visible discoloration beneath the skin as well. These are all problems that can cascade into further problems over time too. Ingrown hairs can get infected. The inflammation can, like with just like with tweezing, potentially cause problems with triggering inflammatory skin conditions. You can counteract ingrown hairs relatively easily though. All it takes is remembering to exfoliate your skin regularly. This will minimize the problem and help heal any ingrown hairs already existing. You will need to stay aware of the problem though as once it happens once it will likely keep happening.

Tweezing is a useful way to maintain the appearance you desire. It does still have potential problems despite this. Ingrown hairs, inflammation, and infection are all potential outcomes if tweezing doesn’t work out quite right. The good news is that a healthy skincare routine minimizes the chances for all of these by keeping your skin clean and exfoliated. In the end, the combination of the routine and tweezing will keep you looking and feeling your best in spite of any troubles.