You can pick up fungus from the environment you surround yourself with, so if you are someone that enjoys walking around barefoot you should be hyper vigilant about your feet. Toenail fungus can develop, especially in damp areas, underneath your toenail and if left untreated will continue to worsen. If the infection is bad enough it can become painful and potentially leave a lasting effect on your nails. There are home remedies to try but they will never be as effective against more serious infections, as it can be difficult to get underneath the nail and eradicate it completely.
Catching toenail fungus early, before it begins to spread down the nail, can really help when treating the infection. The top of your toenail will start to become discolored in a white, yellow, or brown tone and will slowly start to extend down the nail as the infection grows worse. Other symptoms could be the nail becoming thicker, brittle, or ragged as well as emitting an odor. If you are prone to or have recently treated an athlete's foot infection it is important to keep an eye out for these symptoms, as many toenail fungus infections can progress from a case of athlete's foot.
When it comes to treatment of a fungal nail infection, there are different routes that you can take. There are home remedies available, however be advised that they will not be as effective of a treatment option for more serious infections. Home Remedies can include Tea Tree Oil or soaking the infected toe in Listerine, there are also over the counter remedies available at most drugstores. If these remedies are not helping the condition of the infection, it may be time to make an appointment with your podiatrist. Based on your symptoms your podiatrist will be able to plan a more serious treatment plan such as oral antifungal medication, laser treatment, or removal of the nail.
Many people start thinking about their toenail fungus as the weather starts to heat up, however it can take some time to eradicate the infection and for the nail to look healthy and normal again. Our podiatrists suggest that you start coming in soon that way when it’s time to slip on those sandals this summer, your toes are ready!
On the Gulf South Foot & Ankle website we have a whole page dedicated to Toenail Fungus information, which can be viewed here. If you are experiencing an infection from toenail fungus and would like to make an appointment with one of our podiatrists, click here.