Can You Get Athlete's Foot On Your Hands?

Athlete's foot is a recurring and sometimes persistent form of fungal infection. The condition, also termed as "Tinea Pedis" can be painful and it can cause difficulty walking in severe cases. The causing fungal spores are found in abundance in crowded, humid and hot places, like public swimming pools, gyms and common showers. People who take showers or walk bare feet at these places are at a high risk of catching this infection. Those with excessive sweating and poor hygiene are also more likely to get infected.

Can You Get Athlete's Foot on Your Hands?

The answer is a definitive yes. The itchy and scaly rash of athlete's foot can spread to other areas of the body as well. This fungal infection of hands is termed as "Tinea Mannum".

The fungus is highly contagious and spreads rapidly. If you have athlete's feet and touch or scratch the affected area but do not wash hands afterwards, you are very likely to get the rash on hands. Therefore, best avoid touching or scratching the affected area with bare hands. 

Other common reasons why you get athlete's foot on hands are sharing a towel or socks of someone with this infection. Pets can carry the fungal spores and transmit the infection as well. The best way to avoid getting this nasty fungal infection is to take good care of your personal hygiene.


The symptoms are similar to those of athlete's foot. The most commonly involved areas are the palmar creases and the sides of fingers. The rash is red, flaky, itchy and there can be blistering or cracking of the skin in severe cases. It usually has a circular shape with raised borders and in severe form can affect the nails.

athletes foot of hands

For proper treatment it is necessary to diagnose this correctly. Sometimes this rash is confused with eczema or other skin conditions. The best thing is to consult a skin specialist and get correct diagnosis.

What About Other Parts of the Body?

Can you get athlete's foot on your hands? Yes as the infection is highly contagious and it can also affect other body parts if you do not pay extra attention to it. The fungus causing this infection grows on the sweaty, broken, dirty skin, it can grow anywhere on the body where it has favorable conditions available such as the scalp and groin. If the infection is left untreated, or good hygiene is not practiced, there are greater chances that it will spread to other areas. People with compromised immunity such as AIDs are also more likely to get this infection.

How to Prevent Getting Athlete's Foot on Hands

Prevention is always better than cure. There are some preventive measures you can observe and can avoid this irritating itchy condition.

1. Keep the Hands Clean

The fungus grows on moist and warm surfaces. It is contagious so it spreads rapidly and there are increased chances of getting the infection after touching the affected area. By frequent hand washing this risk can be avoided.

If you have athlete’s foot, simply wash your hands with soap and water every time you touch or scratch your feet. Dry them with a clean towel or let them air dry.

2. Never Share Personal Belongings

Sharing towels, shoes, socks or other personal belongings is not a great idea if there is a risk of fungal infection involved. The fungal spores are found in abundance in personal clothing like shoes and socks and sharing them means sharing the infection as well.

Always carry your own clean towels to the gym and never wear some ones shoes or socks.

3. Be Careful with Pets

If you have pets, keep an eye on their cleanliness. Animals can have fungal spores hidden in their fur and you can get it from touching or cuddling them. 

Keep your pets clean. Wash your hands after dealing with them and pay special attention to check them for any infections.

4. Get Treatment

If you have any type of rash or skin infection, the best thing is to get it diagnosed by an expert and get prompt and correct treatment. Early treatment is easy and it reduces the chances of further transmission. Get expert opinion from your health care provider. 

Treatments for athlete's foot on hands are basically the same. For detailed information on treatments and remedies, please go here:'s-Foot.html

Myths on Athlete's Foot Busted

Besides "Can you get athlete's foot on your hands?" there are many more myths and questions concerning athlete's foot. Here are a few commonly believed misconceptions and the truth:

Myth 1: Athlete's Foot Is Only for Athletes

Truth: Anyone can have athlete's foot. You do not need to be an athlete to get an athlete's foot. Anyone can get this infection if you do not practice good hygiene and go bare foot in public places like swimming pool.

Myth 2: Regular Showers Can Cure It

Truth: There is no denying the fact that keeping yourself clean can reduce the risk of all skin infections, but showers are mainly the harboring grounds of fungal infections, especially the communal ones. You cannot wash this fungus away; it is an infection and needs to be treated.

Myth 3: You Can Only Get It by Walking Bare Feet

Truth: Though somewhat true, the true reality is that socks and shoes do provide excellent growing conditions for this fungus and you can get this infection even if you always wear shoes.

Myth 4: No Treatment for Athlete's Foot Is Required

Truth: This is a fungal infection and requires appropriate treatment. It does not get better by itself and if left untreated it can spread to other areas of body and other people.

Myth 5: Once Gone, It's Completely Gone

Truth: Athlete's foot can recur and if it is not treated fully or the preventive measures are not taken, it can happen again and again.

Myth 6: The Treatment Can Be Stopped Once Symptoms Are Cleared

Truth: The best approach is to keep on taking or applying the medicine for the length of time specified by the doctor. This is necessary to eradicate the deep seated fungus and helps to prevent the chances of recurrence.

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