A pervasive condition that affects nail beds, nail fungus is the result of a diverse grouping of fungi termed dermatophytes and is more frequently seen in toenails as compared to fingernails. These microorganisms can colonize both the nails and the spaces between the nails and skin.
Over the course of a nail fungal infection, the affected nails will take on a range of unpleasant physical characteristics. This manifests in the form of thickening, discoloration, brittleness, detachment from the nail bed and, in more serious circumstances, crumbling and shedding away.
When it comes to getting rid of nail fungus, it can be a struggle; with chances of petering back increasing. But don’t lose hope! There are three methods to battling this problem – taking oral medications, applying a topical treatment or taking it up with a surgeon.
A telltale sign of nail fungus is when white or yellow spots appear on the nails. Left unchecked, the spots will grow in size, and the nails may become distorted, discolored, and even detach from the nail bed. In extreme cases, affected nails can shatter and fall away.
Nail fungus poses much more of a threat to the big toes of elderly individuals, those who have diabetes, as well as those suffering from athlete’s foot. It can be more readily identified in these situations than when appearing on the fingers.
Nail fungus is notoriously challenging to deal with, and it has a tendency to keep coming back. When it comes to combating the infection, some approaches involve oral antifungal medication, special topical solutions, or even surgery in extreme cases.
To fully eradicate nail fungus, oral antifungal medications are the most advisable course of action. While such treatments come with potential side effects such as liver damage, gastronomic discomfort, and skin rashes, they are generally necessary in order to continue for several weeks.
Looking for relief from fungal nail infections but not wanting to deal with the hefty side effects of oral medications? Topical antifungal treatments could be a great option, as they are less harsh on the body. Despite being less potent, these treatments act quickly too; only needing to be applied for a few weeks to see results. Side effects like skin irritation or allergic reactions are still possible but much less common than with an oral prescription.
At times, surgery is employed to combat nail fungus, an procedure which consists of eliminating the affected nail and applying antifungal medication in its place. In many cases, though, re-grown nails may be stained and strangely contorted.
Cleanliness is key when it comes to avoiding nail fungus, so make sure to keep your nails trim. Additionally, wearing shoes that are tailored to your feet and constructed with breathable materials is advantageous. As soon as you notice athlete’s foot, don’t hesitate to take action and practice proper foot upkeep.