Are you aware of it? I am sure you are not. Don’t look around, the causative agent is not visible to the naked eye that easily. It belongs to a group of some nasty creatures that are responsible for painful skin infections.
Now you must have guessed it. I am talking about fungi.
A majority of these are molds known as dermatophytes, hence the name dermatophytosis. These love keratin and thus feed themselves to the keratin present on skin, nails and hair. Human skin provides other key requirements as well needed for their survival – warm surrounding and moisture.
Fungus are contagious in nature and spread from person to person. They can also survive on other objects like clothes and equipments until they find a new host. In a large place like gym, they can often get transferred from one person to another.
The toiletries, clothings (towels etc.) and other belongings become an apt source for these to spread and cause discomfort to people who visit gyms to gain fitness but in turn salvage good healthy skin.
Infections Caused By Fungi
You may find it amusing that just one species is capable of causing infection on different parts of the body and result in different infections. Check the common skin infections spread by fungus.
Jock Itch Or Tinea Cruris
It is the most creepiest infection because of its location. A rash appears around the groin, inner thighs and anus often making movement difficult. Though common in men, women too can get infected by it.
It causes ringworm of the body. Women are affected more than the men. One can catch this infection from other people or from objects like clothing and gym equipments. An acute ringworm of the body will spread faster forming red pustular lesions while a chronic one will spread out slowly and the rashes aren’t too severe.
This type of fungus causes infection on the upper part of the body – chest, back, neck and the upper arms. It causes discoloration as it develops small spots that culminate into patches. The patches can bring out different colors on the skin varying from pink to tan to brown. Flaking, itching is common in this type of infection.
A contagious skin infection that is characterized by scaling, itching, and occasional blistering is painful and can be received by walking barefoot in the gym. Keeping feet dry and wearing footwear all the time allow feet to breath and remain infection-free.
This is how you can save yourself from the infection:
· Take a shower soon after training with the best anti-fungal soap
· Never share your anti fungal soap with others in the gym
· Always wear freshly washed workout clothes
· Never enter a whirlpool or cold tub if you have cuts, bruises or sores on your body
· Do ensure that the equipments you are going to use are well-sanitized
· Avoid gym if you have open sores or abrasions. If practicing is extremely important, cover them.
· If you suspect a lesion to be a fungal infection, do get it checked by a doctor.
· Never share your things with others and refrain from taking their as well.
· Do not touch lesions with bare hands as these may get transferred to other parts of the body you may touch. Use only the best antifungal soap for ringworm.
Remember, it can take from a few days to months for a ringworm infection to clear up. You surely wouldn’t want to go through this. So, prevent them. Take care of your hygiene and use a good anti-fungal bar soap every day.