Two Feet, One Rash: Three Possible Causes For Your Red, Itchy, Scaly, And Unbearable Tootsies

Your two feet play one enormous role in how well your day goes, but any number of conditions can cause your tootsies total misery. Three common conditions that will certainly leave you cantankerous from sun up to sundown are eczema, psoriasis and athlete's foot. Deciphering symptoms and determining which one you have is frustrating, but it's the only way to discover the appropriate treatment. Don't delay another day in distress: Talk to a foot doctor about your itchy issues and scaly situation right away, especially if you think you might have one of the following foot conditions:

1. Daunting Dyshidrotic Eczema

Also sometimes referred to as pompholyx, dyshidrotic eczema attacks not only the soles of your feet but also the palms of your hands. Although it's not contagious, your skin will likely look like something out of a horror movie, with blisters full of icky fluid popping up all over your hands and feet. This dreadful condition might be instigated by seasonal allergies, atopic dermatitis, and other unfortunate circumstances.

Despite the constant itch and probable embarrassment you experience, dyshidrotic eczema is manageable with help from a foot doctor and shouldn't continue for more than a few weeks. Left untreated, especially on your feet, this form of eczema can be debilitating, though, so if you feel itching and burning, along with observing an eruption of small blisters, you want to see a professional, right away.

2. Sinister Psoriasis 

While psoriasis can afflict any area of the human body, when it shows up on your feet, you'll have a hard time showing up for work or anywhere else. Dry, itchy, and red plaque will form, beginning with inflammation and irritation. Psoriasis is auto-immune related, meaning you're going to need a number of tests, in addition to visiting a foot doctor, for immediate relief. This unsightly situation prompts skin cells to grow more rapidly than normal, which, when on the feet, mean pain and difficulty with walking.

Psoriasis can affect only your skin, or it may delve deeper into your bones, evolving into psoriatic arthritis, where your joints become inflamed and very painful. While psoriasis can be managed, possibly with prescribed corticosteroids or a peeling agent that will remove it layer by layer, there's no known cure. However, you may be able to inhibit the spread of these sinister scales with a few careful considerations:

  • Keep all areas of your skin protected from the sun.
  • Skip fatty and processed foods, opting for healthy, fresh, and organic ones instead.
  • Minimize the stress in your life, as stress tends to exacerbate autoimmune conditions
  • Check the side effects of any medications you're taking for possible inducers of psoriasis, such as anti-inflammatories and other over-the-counter or prescription drugs.
  • Eliminate alcohol from your diet and stop smoking, if applicable.
  • Use the lotion your podiatrist recommends and according to their exact instructions.

3. Tortuous Tinea Pedis

More infamously known as athlete's foot, tinea pedis starts with a burning itch, followed closely by blistering, scales, and peeling. Sometimes confused with psoriasis, athlete's foot won't typically involve the same tenderness and swelling of the joints, although both produce intolerable symptoms. Tinea pedis, however, is a fungus, making it contagious; thus, you're more likely to see it after going barefoot in a public shower, sharing someone's shoes, or hanging around a public pool.

A podiatrist can not only recognize athlete's foot from other potential problems, but they'll also be able to prescribe a fast-acting and soothing antifungal cream. If left untreated, tinea pedis might spread, including through your toes into the toenail beds and even to other parts of your body. Ask your podiatrist how you most likely caught the fungus in the first place to make sure you know how to avoid it again in the future.

Any rash on your feet will make life unbearable, especially since you probably have no choice but to squeeze your feet into shoes for the day. Don't hesitate to talk to a podiatrist at a clinic like Carolina Foot &  Ankle Specialists about any symptoms as they appear on your feet because waiting too long gives the rash a chance to spread, settle into your skin, and make you miserable. The sooner you have an accurate diagnosis, the sooner you can get your tootsies on the road to recovery, putting one healthy foot in front of the other.