Nail fungus is a common disease. It starts with a white and yellow spot under the tip of a fingernail or toenail and gradually the fungal infection spreads. With the increasing rot of the nail due to fungus, it may discolor the nail; thicken it to crumble at the edges. It may spread to other nails as well. We often ignore such nail fungus and if it is not bothering, we do not opt for any treatment. But if it turns out to be painful and has developed thickened nails, self-care and domestic medications might help. But even though the treatment helps it recover, there is always a chance of nail fungus to come back. Toenail fungus is seen more often than in fingernails. The disease of nail fungus is also called Onychomycosis.
Causes of nail fungus:
As the name suggests, fungus infection develops due to infection by a fungal organism (fungus). The most common form of fungi that cause nail fungus is known as a dermatophyte. Yeast and molds are other variables that cause fungal infection in nails. It is most commonly seen in older adults but does not imply it won't occur in younger people. As the nail gets old, it becomes brittle and dry which results in the formation of cracks in nails. These cracks allow room for fungi to enter. Other causes of developing nail fungus can be- Reduced blood circulation to feet and a weak immune system.
Sometimes, nail fungus can also develop from an athlete's foot. It spreads from one nail to another. But it occurs very rarely to get the disease from an affected person.
The chances of developing nail fungus occur when:
- Old age
- Reduced blood flow
- Sweating heavily
- Unhealthy conditions that allow fungi to grow
- Athlete's foot
- Walking barefoot in damp areas such as swimming pools, bathrooms, etc.
- Having an unattended skin or nail injury or in case of a skin condition such as psoriasis.
- Suffering from diabetes
- A problem in proper blood circulation
- The weakened immune system of the body
Symptoms of nail fungus:
You might have developed a nail fungus if you observe the following symptoms growing in your nails:
- White nails start changing to yellow-brown
- Brittle, crumbled or ragged
- Distorted shape
- Develops a dark color due to debris building up under your nail.
- Foul smell.
If the domestic nail fungus cures are not improving the situation, you may want to consult a nail fungus doctor at DeNiel Foot and Ankle Center. When the nails become extremely discolored, thickened or darkened, it is advisable not to ignore it anymore and consult a foot doctor urgently to get the best treatment for a fungal toenail. If you are already suffering from diabetes, it is a must to get treated by a physician.
If you have any questions, please feel free to contact our office located in Houston, TX. We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot and ankle needs.