Toenail Fungus is a tough infection to fight. It can lead to cracked skin since the fungus produces itchy, irritated skin. Failure to obtain timely treatment not only leads to an unsightly, and painful brittle nail, but also the chance that the entire nail separates from the nail bed. Proper care is paramount since this condition can easily happen again and can spread to other parts of the body.
Treatment for toenail fungus involves:
- Use of oral antifungal medications that can help to destroy the infection. Those with liver complications may not want to take this medication as it can have adverse reactions.
- Medicated nail polishes may help to deter a toenail fungal infection, although it is not as effective as other methods.
- Medicated creams and powders are helpful for covering the entire foot so that the infection doesn’t spread any further and should be applied between the toes to ensure that fungi do not multiply in those locations due to the moist nature of the spot.
- Use of flip-flops or some type of footwear when walking in public pools or gym locker rooms.
- Refrain from sharing shoes and sterilize showers used by family members with a fungal infection.
- Laser treatment is very helpful in destroying fungus residing underneath the nail without invasive surgery since it penetrates the layer of the toenail effortlessly. The only other surgical option would be to physically remove the nail which can lead to longer than expected recovery times.
Toenail fungus can wreak havoc on nails and on the surrounding skin. Here at Family Foot Care of Southern Maryland, located in (Owings (410) 257-2242, Lexington Park (301) 863-6601, LaPlata (301) 934-3345 and Huntingtown (410) 535-1719), Maryland, our podiatrists Dr. Jeffrey Idol, DPM, Dr. Judith Olkaba, DPM, or Dr. Ruth P. Devadas, DPM, will help to destroy the fungal infection and treat any resulting cracked skin. Please make an appointment by calling our office at any of the numbers provided above today!
Toenail Fungus can be unsightly and is generally unpleasant. Our podiatrists Dr. Jeffrey Idol, DPM, Dr. Judith Olkaba, DPM, or Dr. Ruth P. Devadas, DPM, can provide treatment for this condition at the Family Foot Care of Southern Maryland, located in Owings (410) 257-2242, Lexington Park (301) 863-6601, LaPlata (301) 934-3345 and Huntingtown (410) 535-1719.
Toenail Fungus is unfortunately a common condition that starts beneath the tip of the toenail. As it grows deeper, the nail discolors, thickens and becomes brittle at the edge. The nails can also become slanted and start to emit an odor. This condition results from various fungi, the most common of which is called dermatophyte. This type of infection can form any age, but it tends to happen in older individuals since their nails get frail and cause cracks, which allow fungi to enter.
Other factors that allow for this condition to occur include:
- Poor circulation.
- A weakened immune system.
- Athlete's foot that spreads to the toenail.
- Heavy perspiration.
- Walking shoeless in moist public areas, such as swimming pools, gyms or locker rooms.
- Diabetes, which can cause a numbness in the feet and a bigger risk of a bacterial skin infection. This would cause any small injury to generally lead to a more severe complication because of the reduced circulation.
Methods of treatment include trimming nails in a straight fashion and filing down the edges of the nail so that their smooth and less thickened. Cleaning the tools used to trim the toenails is also important. Utilizing socks that soak up sweat is helpful to keep moisture away from the toes, wearing foot wear that has materials that allow the feet to air out, discarding older shoes that have become worn out and treating frequently worn shoes with sanitizers and antifungal powders are all helpful in making sure your toes have the best chance of avoiding this condition. It’s also helpful to use closed toe shoes when walking through public pool areas and gym locker rooms. Also, be sure to find nail salons that have clean and sterile tools.
Due to the nature of this condition, it is imperative that you obtain treatment as soon as possible. So, please contact us if you’re experiencing any of the above symptoms and we’ll make sure to have your toenails fresh in no time!
Our team at the Family Foot Care of Southern Maryland can treat a variety of foot and ankle conditions. Toenail Fungus can be unsightly and painful. It may require treatment by one of our podiatrists if not managed correctly. Our team of podiatrists, Dr. Jeffrey Idol, Dr. Judith Olkaba or Dr. Ruth P. Devadas, can treat Toenail Fungus via natural or laser treatment at one of our four Southern Maryland locations (Owings, Lexington Park, LaPlata and Huntingtown).
Toenail Fungus is common around pools, gyms or even carpeting. 1 in 10 adults develop a toenail fungus infection. This infection can lead to brittle or swollen nails. The fungus will cause nail color to dull and loose its shine, with small white dots forming under the nail. If left untreated, nails will become brown. The area around the infected nails will also start to emit an odor. For elder adults with weakened immune systems, treatment is more urgent as the infection can enter their blood stream.
One form of treatment through drugs is Lamisil, taken for 90 days. Antifungal nail polish or other topical treatments also help to treat nail fungus. Essential oils can help because they have anti-fungal properties and they can easily be absorbed by the skin to for an immediate benefit.
Laser treatment may be necessary if the above remedies are unhelpful. This treatment eliminates the source of the fungal infection. The laser penetration is minimally invasive, goes through the surface, and completely kills the infection that causes the fungus under the nails. Fungus will no longer grow after treatment.
The earlier Toenail Fungus is treated, the less likely laser treatment will be required. However, if you have toenail fungus that is significantly changing toenail color and causing pain, don’t hesitate to contact our office online for an appointment or call us as soon as possible. Please feel free to discuss your Toenail Fungus with our staff and we will determine the best course of treatment specifically tailored for your feet.
Podiatrists see many people with toenail fungus issues. Usually, we see them after they’ve had the fungus for a long time, and it has affected multiple toes. When toenail fungus is severe, the nail can turn completely yellow and separate from the nail bed. Not a pretty sight.
So, are there things you can do to try to get rid of toenail fungus from the comfort of your own home? Some people say “absolutely!” They swear by certain at-home remedies and their effectiveness. None of these have been proven in any medical way, but they are not harmful, so you may want to consider giving them a try. Here are the most common things I have found that people use at home to get rid of nasty toenail fungus:
- Baking soda and vinegar soak: it is recommended that you use apple cider vinegar that is unprocessed (and contains “the mother”). You should soak your feet in both solutions twice a day. Some people mix the combo together in a soak, others use a vinegar soak first and then follow it with a baking soda soak.
- Tea tree oil: tea tree oil is a natural disinfectant, which has anti-bacterial and fungicidal properties. It can be used directly on the nail or in a foot soak, either way it’s recommended to dilute it. This, too, should be done twice a day.
- Coconut oil: Coconut oil is a great way to combat fungus without using harsh chemicals. The fatty acids in the coconut oil penetrate the fungal membrane, which can ultimately lead to cell disintegration and the ultimate destruction of the fungus. You can apply it directly to the toenail or toenails that are affected, and do so 2-4 times daily. (Just be careful to wash hands between applications or apply with different fingers if putting on multiple toes).
These are a few popular at-home treatments for toenail fungus. If these at home remedies do not work than we recommend you to schedule an appointment with
Family Foot Care of Southern Maryland. If medical attention is needed for this or any other foot or ankle issue, Dr. Idol and his team of board certified podiatrists are available to help. He and his colleagues have 4 Southern Maryland locations conveniently located for you to visit!