Posted in Lifestyle on July 13, 2009

toenail-fungus

Toenail fungus, also called as onychomycosis is a prevalent, chronic, stubborn, deep-rooted fungal infection, and is affecting more than 35 million people. Signs of toenail fungus include brittle, thickened, and flaky nails. Aside from being unattractive and uncomfortable, fungal toenail infections can also cause loss of toenails. It is very difficult to get rid of, that even well-known drugs used to threat it are ineffective or risky. There is also a powerful link between toenail fungus, and acquiring athlete’s foot, which in itself is a very communicable infection. Toenail fungus symptoms also includes presence of bad odor and yellowish nails. Toenail Fungus, a type of feet fungus, can spread from one family member to another especially those whose feet are always wet with sweat. Fungus requires a dark and moist condition to grow and thrive. Your shoes tend to be the suitable place for this to exist.

Are you likely to catch fungal infection on the toenail?

Active people such as runners, and those who are hooked in any type of sports are more likely to get toenail infections. It is also extremely common to anyone who wears soggy shoes for any length of time. One way that fungi spores may be disperse from person to person is by sharing towels, washcloths, shoes, or personal things. This should be avoided to prevent fungal infections. It can also multiply even to other areas of the body, such as the groin. Wearing tight-fitting shoes and layers of polish in the nails increases the threat of acquiring toenail fungus. Having a chronic condition such as diabetes that influences your circulation or HIV also furthers the risk. The big and the little toenails that are most likely to be afflicted.

Preventing Toenail Fungus Infections

Since curing toenail infections can take up to months, the best course of toenail fungus treatment is prevention. Keeping your feet ventilated and unmoistened is one of the best measure to prevent toenail fungus, as well as avoiding areas that may house the fungi such as spas, swimming pools, showers, and locker rooms. It can settle in balmy puddles on tile floors, waiting for someone to walk in and pick up the spores. Furthermore, to prevent fungi spores from accumulating in your shower room, you should disinfect your shower and clean your shower mat frequently in hot water. It is also advisable to use anti fungal powder or spray in your shoes to avoid accumulation.

Leaving Toenail Fungus Untreated

If you feel that you have toenail fungus or if you have complications with your nails that do not appear normal, you should seek medical attention from a foot doctor. Toenail infections must be attended in a timely manner. Extended exposure to a toenail fungal infection can affect the recovery rate of the nail, and can cause disfigurement of the nail. However, the results are not absolutely cosmetic. People who have toenail fungus normally suffer continued pain and discomfort and, if left untreated, can become a serious one. It can lead to separation of the toenail from the nail bed, as well as complete degeneration of the nail.

Consulting a Foot Doctor

Toenail fungus cure may start by consulting a podiatrist or foot doctor. A foot doctor can get rid of toenail fungus trimming the infected nail with clippers, filing it down, and by providing prescription-strength topical medication or a paste that contains urea and bifonazole (this treatment usually lasts 12 weeks). Your doctor may prescribe an anti-fungal cream or a medicated nail polish containing either amorolfine (Loceryl) or ciclopirox (Loprox) if the infection is mild and confined to a narrow area of your nail. You should put on the nail polish twice a week until your nail is cured. In very serious cases, it may be necessary to remove the nail surgically- the only attested permanent solution to fungal toenail infections. This is an extreme condition wherein the infection is already resistant to toenail fungus remedies. The afflicted nail will be eliminated and over time will be naturally replaced with a thick layer of skin .