Garden State Foot & Ankle Center


Fungal Nails

Nail fungus, or onychomycosis, is a common problem that is prevalent in 7-9% of the adult population. Fungus in the nails is much more resistant and difficult to treat than athlete's foot (tinea pedis). Nail bed injuries can make the toe more susceptible to all types of infection, including fungal infection. Those who suffer chronic diseases, such as diabetes, psoriasis, immune deficiency conditions, or circulatory problems are more prone to fungal nail infections.

The most common indication that you're nails are infected are when they become thick and discolored: white, black, yellow or green. As the infection progresses, more of the nail becomes infected and the nail turns brittle and painful, with pieces breaking off or coming off the toe completely. In severe cases, the surrounding skin gets inflamed and painful underneath and around the nail.

Keys to prevent fungal nail infections:

  • Don't share shoes or socks with others that have the condition
  • Don't share clippers of files with others
  • Be cautious not to injury the nail bed (eg trauma or excessive cutting)
  • Wear clean cotton socks and make sure that they are dry
  • Try rotating shoe gear to ensure that they are dry
  • Wear shower sandals when in public showers or wet environments like pool clubs and locker rooms
  • Bring your own clean instruments to pedicure places or insure that your facility properly sterilizes they're instruments

There are three common ways to treat fungal nails including topical paint-on lacquer's (eg formula 3, Penlac), oral medication and fungal nail lasers. Each of these treatment options have pros and cons that will be gone over on your visit at our podiatry practice. Once treated, fungal nail infections can reoccur very easily, and you need to take the proper precautions to prevent this from happening. 




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