Athlete’s Foot (Tinea Pedi) is a contagious fungal infection caused by Trichophyton Fungus. This fungus is generally present on the human skin but starts growing rapidly once they find warm and damp conditions. Tight shoes with no air ventilation provide an ideal environment for the fungus to thrive resulting an athlete’s foot.
Symptoms of athlete’s foot include burning, stinging, redness and flaking of the skin. If you want to avoid chemical-laden creams then you can try simple home remedies. Baking soda is one such remedy which has helped many people in treat athlete’s foot.
Is Baking Soda Effective for Athlete’s Foot?
- Baking soda has an alkaline property that helps to balance the pH level of the feet which creates an unfavorable environment for fungus and bacteria to survive.
- It is a potent anti-fungal agent that destroys infection-causing fungus and eliminates foot odor associated with athlete’s foot.
- It is an excellent exfoliator that softens the skin and removes the unsightly calluses and peeled skin caused by athlete’s foot.
How to Use Baking Soda for Athlete’s Foot?
Baking soda can be used in different ways to treat athlete’s foot. We have mentioned them below with a detailed description.
1. Baking Soda
Baking soda alone can be used as a foot soak, an ointment or as a rub. You can regularly try 1 or 2 processes mentioned below to get relief from athlete’s foot.
Process 1: Baking Soda and Water Foot Soak
- Pour 2 to 3 liters of lukewarm water in a large bucket.
- Add 3 tablespoons of baking soda to it.
- Stir well until the baking soda is dissolved.
- Soak your feet in the baking soda water for 15 to 20 minutes.
- Use a scrub brush to clean your feet and in between the toes.
- Wipe your feet with a clean towel and moisturize it with coconut oil or petroleum jelly.
Process 2: Baking Soda Rub
- Clean your feet thoroughly and pat dry with a towel.
- Mix 3 parts of baking soda with 1 part of water to form a thick paste.
- Spread the paste evenly on the feet and in between your toes.
- Let it dry on its own.
- Wash your feet with cold water and pat dry with a towel.
Process 3: Baking Soda Sprinkle
- Sprinkle generous amount of dry baking soda powder in your shoes after you get home.
- You can also rub on some baking soda all over your feet before wearing socks to keep your feet dry.
- Repeat this every time you wear socks and shoes.
2. Baking Soda and Vinegar Paste
White vinegar is a diluted form of acetic acid that has potent antifungal properties. It destroys the fungus growth in between the toes.
- Take 1 cup of vinegar and 2 cups of water in a container.
- Add generous amount of baking soda to it to form a paste.
- Mix well and apply this paste evenly on both feet. Don’t miss to apply in between the toes.
- Wait till the paste dries out on its own.
- Wash away with water and pat dry with a towel.
- Repeat the application 2 times a day for a few days.
Note – It is important to dilute the vinegar with water so that doesn’t harm the skin.
3. Baking Soda and Apple Cider Vinegar Mix
The antifungal properties of apple cider vinegar kill the fungus. It also provides relief from itching, peeling of skin, inflammation and pain associated with athlete’s foot.
- Mix 1 cup of pure organic apple cider vinegar with 1 cup of water.
- Add 2 tablespoons of baking soda and mix well.
- Using a cotton ball, apply this mixture over the infection and in between the toes.
- Wait for 30 minutes and wash off with water.
- Dry your feet with a clean towel.
- Continue to use this remedy 1 to 2 times a day for a few weeks.
4. Baking Soda and Corn starch Rub
The fungus that causes infection thrives in the moist and warm environment of the foot. Corn starch helps to cure the fungal infections by absorbing moisture from the foot.
- Mix equal parts of dry corn starch and baking soda in a bowl.
- Clean your feet thoroughly using a mild soap and pat dry with a towel.
- Rub the corn starch and baking soda mixture onto your feet and toes.
- Wait for 10 to 15 minutes and then brush off with a clean towel.
- Reapply this rub at least 2 times a day till the infections are completely cured.
5. Baking Soda and Garlic Soak
Ajoene, a natural compound present in garlic is a potent anti-inflammatory and antibacterial agent that eliminates the fungus and relieves inflammation, itching, and peeling of skin.
- Take 2 tablespoons each of baking soda and garlic powder.
- Add it to 1/2 liter of water.
- Stir well and soak your feet in it for 15 to 20 minutes.
- Wash your feet with water and pat dry with a towel.
- Continue following this remedy 2 to 3 times a day till the infection is healed.
6. Baking Soda and Tea Tree Oil Salve
Tea tree oil has wonderful antifungal and antibacterial properties that help to wipe out the infection-causing fungus. It also works as a natural disinfectant and prevents further infection.
- In a bowl, mix tea tree oil and water in equal ratio.
- Add 2 tablespoons of baking soda to it to make a thick paste.
- Apply this paste to the infections and leave it on for 10 to 15 minutes.
- Wipe away the paste with a wet cotton pad.
- Reapply the paste 1 to 2 times every day till the infection is cured.
Note – It is important to dilute the tea tree essential oil with water because direct application of it can irritate the skin.
7. Baking Soda and Ginger Paste
Ginger possesses potent anti-fungal properties that kill the fungus that causes athlete’s foot. It also prevents further infections.
- Crush a 3-inch piece of ginger to make a smooth paste.
- Add it to a cup of boiling water and let it steep for 5 minutes.
- Next, add 1 tablespoon of baking soda to it and let the mixture cool down a bit.
- Apply the solution directly to the infected areas of the feet and in between the toes.
- Wait for 15 minutes and then wash off with water.
- Repeat this remedy 1 to 2 times a day till the infection is cured.
8. Baking Soda and Aloe Vera Gel Ointment
Aloe Vera contains a particular protein called 14 kDa that has the capacity to prevent the fungus from spreading and thus, controls the athlete’s foot.
- Cut an aloe vera leaf and take out the gel from inside it.
- Take 2 tablespoons of the fresh aloe vera gel in a bowl and add 1 tablespoon of baking soda to it.
- Mix well to create an ointment.
- Apply this ointment at least 2 times a day till the infection subsides.
9. Baking Soda and Cinnamon Soak
The anti-fungal property of cinnamon fights with the fungus and slow down the spreading of fungal infection.
- Heat 1/2 liter of water.
- Break 8 to 10 sticks of cinnamon and add to it.
- Let the mixture boil for 15 minutes and then simmer it for another 30 minutes.
- Now, add 1 tablespoon of baking soda to this solution and mix well.
- Once it is warm enough, soak your feet in it for 15 minutes.
- Repeat this foot-soak at least once every day for a couple of weeks.
10. Baking Soda and Onion Juice Mix
Onion is known for its powerful antibacterial and antiseptic properties that help to treat fungal and bacterial infections such as athlete’s foot.
- Grate a medium-sized onion and squeeze out its juice.
- Add a tablespoon of baking soda to the onion juice to form a paste.
- Apply this paste evenly over the infections.
- Wait for 15 minutes so that the skin soaks up the pungent juice of the onion.
- Wipe away the paste with a wet cotton pad.
- Repeat this remedy twice a day for at least 1 week.
Tips and Precautions:
- Baking soda may be too strong and drying for sensitive skin and it can cause tingling, itchiness, and pain. People with sensitive skin should conduct a patch test before using it as a remedy.
- Skin can become unusually dry after using baking soda, so it is important to use a moisturizer such as coconut oil or petroleum jelly.
- Those having diabetes should not experiment with home remedies; they should contact a doctor immediately if they have athlete’s foot or any other foot infection.
- Give the home remedies at least 3 weeks of time to work. But see a doctor if the symptoms persist or turn severe after that.
- Wash your hands with soap and water after touching the infected area.
- Maintain good personal hygiene and make sure your hands and feet are dry at all times to avoid fungal infections in the first place.
- Don’t share towels, slippers and linens.
- Wash your socks after every wear. Don’t ever re-wear the same pair without washing them.
- Wear slippers in public baths, showers and around swimming pools to prevent foot infections.
So, try out these remedies using baking soda to treat mild or moderate cases of athlete’s foot. Do share your tips and remedies with us in the comments section below.