Toenail fungus, also known as onychomycosis, is a prevalent condition that affects a large number of individuals. It is a fungal infection that may be painful and unsightly, and if left untreated, it can progress to more severe consequences. Podiatrists, sometimes known as foot doctors, are medical experts in the identification and treatment of foot and ankle conditions, including onychomycosis. This article will look at how podiatrists are onychomycosis specialists.
Diagnosis of Onychomycosis
Toenail fungus may be difficult to identify, and it is sometimes misdiagnosed as psoriasis or eczema. A podiatrist may perform a thorough inspection of the problematic nail and obtain a sample for laboratory analysis. This aids in identifying the kind of fungus causing the illness and the ideal treatment method.
Treatment Options for Onychomycosis
Toenail fungus may be treated with a variety of methods, and an onychomycosis specialist can help establish the most effective therapy for each patient. For mild cases of toenail fungus, over-the-counter antifungal drugs such as creams, sprays, and nail lacquers may be beneficial. But, more severe infections may need oral or topical antifungal drugs that require a doctor’s prescription.
In recent years, laser therapy has also gained popularity as an onychomycosis treatment option. This method includes employing a focused beam of light to eradicate the nail fungus. In extreme situations when alternative therapies have failed, podiatrists may sometimes prescribe surgical removal of the affected nail.
Onychomycosis specialists may also recommend preventative measures to lessen the likelihood of getting toenail fungus. These may include instructions on good foot care, such as keeping feet clean and dry, changing socks daily, and wearing shoes that fit well and are breathable. Doctors of podiatry may also advise avoiding going barefoot in public, since this might increase the risk of fungal exposure.
Overall Foot Health
Doctors of podiatry may also assist with general foot health, which can aid in the prevention and treatment of toenail fungus. They may provide advice on good foot care, such as frequent foot checks, moisturizing the feet, and wearing the proper footwear. Doctors of podiatry may also treat various foot and ankle conditions that may contribute to the development of toenail fungus, including nail damage and poor circulation.
Onychomycosis may be a painful and unsightly condition, but podiatrists can help diagnose and treat the problem. They provide several treatment options, including over-the-counter and prescription drugs, laser therapy, and surgical excision of the afflicted nail. In addition, onychomycosis specialists may recommend preventive steps to lower the likelihood of acquiring toenail fungus and boost general foot health.