What is Nail Fungus?
It’s a prevalent condition where fungi infiltrate the nail area, infecting the skin between the nail and the skin. Both toenail fungus and fingernail fungus are susceptible to these infections. Once the infection takes hold in the nail bed, part of the nail may turn yellow or white. As nail fragments flake off and accumulate under the nail, it can lead to the nail splitting, crumbling, or separating from the skin. Nails may appear thicker than usual and may be uncomfortable when wearing specific shoes, in addition to being aesthetically displeasing. Despite the existence of nail fungus medication and home remedies, the condition can persist and prove challenging to treat. Referred to technically as onychomycosis, nail fungus occurs more frequently in individuals over 60 or those with diabetes but can impact anyone.
What are the signs of Nail Fungus?
In both toenail fungus and fingernail fungus cases, the infection typically starts as a pale yellow or white spot beneath the tip of the nail. As the condition advances, you may observe additional symptoms such as:
- Nails appearing thicker than usual
- Spreading discoloration at the top of nails
- Ragged nail edges due to crumbling
- Distorted nail shape
- Slight odor emanating from the affected nail(s)
What are the different types of nail fungus?
Distal Subungual Onychomycosis (DSO):
- This is the most common type of fungal nail infection.
- Caused by the same organisms responsible for athlete’s foot.
- It starts with infected skin under the nail bed.
- Debris buildup under the nail may lead to nail crumbling or separation from the skin.
- Despite its prevalence, DSO remains challenging to treat.
White Superficial Onychomycosis (WSO):
- Affects the topmost layer of the toenail or fingernail.
- White spots appear on the nail’s surface, giving it a chalky appearance.
- WSO is easily treatable since the infection does not extend between the nail and the skin.
Candida Onychomycosis (CO):
- Although uncommon, Candida onychomycosis affects both the nail and the surrounding skin, causing pain.
- It may lead to the skin or nail turning white, green, or brown, and the nail may separate from the nail bed.
- This type of infection can be painful due to tender or swollen skin near the affected area.
What causes Nail Fungus?
Older individuals, with slower-growing nails, are more susceptible.
History of Athlete’s Foot:
Previous occurrences of athlete’s foot increase the risk.
Regular and heavy sweating contributes to a conducive environment.
Underlying Skin Conditions:
Conditions like psoriasis can elevate the risk.
Walking barefoot in locker rooms, gym showers, and around swimming pools.
Nail Salon Practices:
Using services of nail salons that do not adequately sterilize equipment.
Conditions like circulation problems, diabetes, or a weakened immune system.
How to treat nail fungus?
Addressing nail fungus can pose challenges, yet various remedies are available. Over-the-counter nail fungus medications, such as antifungal creams and gels, are accessible without a prescription at most local pharmacies. It’s crucial to initiate nail fungus treatment at the first sign of infection. Some individuals advocate for natural alternatives like tea tree oil, apple cider vinegar, antibacterial mouthwash, and snakeroot, applying them daily for several weeks. Additionally, your doctor can prescribe an antifungal topical drug resembling nail polish or antifungal pills to address your onychomycosis. In severe cases, your doctor may choose to remove all or part of the toenail, and a new nail will grow in its place.
Metanail Serum Pro is specially formulated to tackle toenail fungus and brittle nails. Its efficacy lies in its capacity to pinpoint the underlying cause of toenail fungus, specifically T. Rubrum.
How can I avoid nail fungus?
Follow these nail health tips to minimize the risk of developing nail fungus:
1. Choose breathable footwear, avoiding all-leather options.
2. Change socks throughout the day.
3. Opt for sweat-wicking or sweat-absorbing socks.
4. Select 100% cotton socks.
5. Use shoes treated with antifungal properties.
6. Wear waterproof shoes in and around swimming pools and communal shower areas.
7. Trim nails straight across, filing edges and thick areas.
8. Disinfect nail clippers after each use.
9. Choose nail salons that sterilize their equipment.
Should I consult a doctor about nail fungus?
If you’re dealing with nail fungus, it’s crucial not to let it linger. There are instances where nail fungus can progress to a point that necessitates a visit to the doctor. If the nail fungus becomes painful, it may signal a severe infection that has the potential to cause permanent damage to your nails. Moreover, it could lead to other serious infections spreading to different parts of your body, especially if you have a suppressed immune system. If your nails show signs of infection accompanied by pain, seeking medical attention is advisable. Often, over-the-counter remedies may prove insufficient, and you may require a dermatologist’s expertise to prescribe a potent antifungal topical ointment that accelerates the healing process. The doctors at Dermatology Physicians of Connecticut specialize in addressing severe cases of nail fungus.
Metanail Complex Serum Pro harnesses the power of natural herbs, plants, and oils to strengthen your body’s inherent detoxification mechanisms and eliminate fungal infections. Incorporating Metanail Complex Serum Pro into your routine can improve every aspect of your foot and nail health.
If you have diabetes, additional complicating factors may be present. Diabetics often experience diminished nerve supply and/or blood circulation in their feet and toes. There is also an increased risk of Cellulitis, a bacterial skin infection, among individuals with diabetes. Given the potential for nail fungus to lead to further complications, diabetics who suspect a fungal infection should promptly consult a doctor at the first indication.