Posts for tag: toenail fungus
Treating toenail fungus
Toenail fungus--it's one of the most common podiatric problems children, teens, and adults have. Causing thickened, yellow, brittle nails, onychomycosis (the medical name for toenail fungus) spreads easily and can be stubborn to treat. If you see one or more of your toenails changing shape, color, and texture, see your foot doctor right away. They have the expertise and treatments to give you ten clear toenails once again.
How toenail fungus starts
The micro-organism thrives in dark, moist environments--sweaty socks and sneakers being prime candidates. Additionally, shared towels, nail clippers, shower room floors, and pool decks breed toenail and Athlete's Foot fungus. In fact, if you suffer periodic outbreaks of itchy, uncomfortable Athlete's Foot, you're more prone to onychomycosis, says the American Academy of Dermatology.
Conquering toenail fungus
Your foot doctor sees scores of patients with toenail fungus. Visual inspection is the main diagnostic tool, and for mild cases of onychomycosis, the podiatrist may recommend creams or ointments applied topically. Oral medications are an option as well.
Additionally, modern podiatry offers innovative laser treatments which kill the micro-organism right where it lives. Painless and very effective, laser treatments are applied to all ten toenails to prevent re-infection.
Unfortunately, toenail fungal infections can become quite severe and spread to the nail bed. When infection is severe, the podiatrist may advise complete removal of the toenail to prevent further problems.
Prevention is best
Of course, if you can avoid toenail fungus, your feet and nails will look and feel their best, and you won't be embarrassed to wear open-toed shoes or sandals in the warm weather. However, some people are more prone to this common infection--diabetics, those with poor peripheral circulation and individuals who are immunosuppressed.
Regardless, your podiatrist recommends these preventive measures for healthy, fungus-free nails:
- Wash your feet with soap and water daily, and dry them with a clean towel.
- Clip your toenails straight across with a clean clippers.
- Wear clean socks daily.
- Change your gym shoes after a workout. In fact, alternate pairs if possible, letting your footwear dry out between wearings.
- Wear flip-flops or shower sandals in the locker room and poolside, too.
Are you suffering from toenail fungus?
Toenail fungus is when toenail, fingernail, or even skin under a nail, is infected. Your Boca Raton, FL, podiatrist can help you deal with toenail fungus with laser treatment, and provide preventative care options.
Fungi, yeasts, or molds may result in toenail infection. Fungi thrive in warm and moist places. Try to avoid using nail clippers used by someone who has a toenail fungus, and stepping barefoot on public showers and pools, which are places for fungi to thrive.
There are at-home and prescribed treatments, depending on how bad the infection. Treatments include topical and oral anti-fungal treatments that can suppress infection and symptoms.
Untreated toenail fungus can spread and result in more severe issues. Be sure to look out for the following symptoms:
- Darkened, yellow, or white toenail
- Nails split from the nail bed
- Thick or brittle nail
If you suffer from toenail fungus, you should see your Boca Raton podiatrist for treatment, especially since toenail fungus is hard to treat and re-occur. The recurrence and/or severity need longer lasting and more intense treatment, laser technology.
Laser treatment is another great option to help treat fungus. The FDA-approved laser beam targets pigmentation present in fungi. The fungi absorb the laser's light. The light creates heat that ends up destroying the fungus in the toenail. The laser treatment doesn’t harm soft, healthy tissue near the infected nail bed.
For more information or to schedule an appointment for laser treatment in Boca Raton, FL, call Dr. Block at (561) 368-3232 today!