Here’s how to treat toenail fungus
Toenails do not require a lot of maintenance and are generally ignored by most of us. Similarly, toenail fungus is considered to be a insignificant disease, but that can have some grave repercussions on your body. If you do not know the exact symptoms of toenail fungus, you can easily ignore this infection, which might turn into a disastrous disease. However, when our toe gets infected, it can cause excruciating pain and make simple activities, such as walking agonizing.
Common symptoms of toenail fungus
A toenail fungus requires a lot of attention, and you need to be hygienic when infected with such a fungus as it is extremely contagious. The most common symptoms of a toenail infection include:
- The color of the affected nail changes from brown or yellow. This discoloration is the most obvious symptom of a fungal infection.
- The toenail infected with fungus thickens, and this nail increases the pressure on the toe making it weak and painful.
- The shape of the nail gets distorted and using a nail cutter to trim it will not help.
- The affected nail becomes brittle and is prone to crumble.
- The nail smells foul due to the presence of the fungus.
Causes of toenail infection
Toenail fungus is caused by a particular type of fungus called dermatophyte. This specific fungus reaches the deeper layers of the nail and starts developing an infection, which makes the nail brittle and weak. Once the virus starts spreading, the affected nail causes great pain to the patient and makes walking difficult. Also, using that particular foot for anything can be unbearable.
Such an infection is highly contagious, and hence you can quickly catch it if you are sharing your shoes or socks with someone else. Yeast and molds also cause similar kind of fungal infection. Nail fungus is not fatal, but if toenail fungus treatment is not completed on time, then it can lead to an occurrence of a grave disease. The infection might spread to other body parts as well and put the whole body in danger.
Some of the common causes of toenail fungus are:
- A weak immune system might not be able to defend itself from the bacteria and will lead to such fungal infections.
- Walking in a swimming pool or damp area without slippers can cause the bacteria to enter the nails and cause fungal infection.
- In older adults, when the nail ages and becomes brittle, it is susceptible to toenail fungus.
- Reduced blood circulation can also cause the bacteria to spread faster and make such a fungal infection complicated and fatal.
- If you have diabetes, such fungal infections are common and should be contained as soon as possible. The high sugar content in your blood helps the fungus to spread to different parts of the body. Recovery from such infection becomes much more difficult.
Toenail fungus – Treatment
You need to get the best toenail fungus treatment, as it can cause severe infections in your body. Toenail fungus treatment is possible with simple home remedies, and if that does not work, it is recommended to consult a doctor instantly.
- Taking care at home
The toenail fungus is nothing but a fungal infection in the nail region that causes extreme pain. You can apply antifungal disinfectant ointment on the nail to kill the bacteria and get quicker results. Washing the toe with warm water on a daily basis can help soften the nail and make the ointment reach the deeper layers of the nail. Trimming and filing the nails can also help reduce the pain and cure the infection easily.
- Prescription remedies
If these over-the-counter remedies do not affect the infection, it is recommended to go to a doctor as soon as possible. They can provide you with a few antifungal oral drugs that can heal the nail quickly. The doctor can also prescribe medicated nail polish and cream to reduce the pain and keep the nail intact. The entire process of healing using this nail polish might take over a year. It also helps to get rid of any kind of fungal infection in that region.
- Hygiene is important
The most crucial aspect of any toenail fungus treatment is keeping it clean. You should not wear the same socks for more than a day. Wear sweat-absorbing socks while wearing sneakers. Avoid sharing nail cutters or manicure tools. However, the best toenail fungus treatment is using antifungal disinfectant creams and pills at the same time. It is effective and can give results in a matter of few weeks.
Taking precautions to avoid toenail fungus is the best option as once you are afflicted with such an infection, it is tough to get rid of the infection entirely. Always remember, prevention is better than cure.