Get Adobe Flash player

Welcome To NailsFungus.org

Welcome to the Blog Section of NailsFungus.org

Welcome to NailsFUngus.org - Nail Fungus

In this section you will find articles and videos on nail fungus and nail fungus treatments. Feel free to search for a subject concerning you or just browse around. We have amassed the largest informational database on nail fungus online and are here to help…

A Quick Overview of Toenail Fungus Treatment Options

A Quick Overview of

Toenail Fungus Treatment Options

Toenail fungus is one of the most common and contractible diseases, as well as one of the most difficult to cure. The first thing you have to do is determine the cause of the infection. Is it fungal, bacterial, something else? And which kind of nail fungus is it? Is it Dermatophyte or yeast? Once your doctor has identified the source of the infection you can determine the course of treatment. Many people choose the home remedy path and find it very effective. Please note, if your nail fungus infection has reached the point where there is pain and/or drainage (oozing pus) you are well past the point where home remedies of any kind will work. If this is the case, you will need to find a standard medical solution to your problem.

Home remedies really are effective, especially in treating toenail fungus. Many people consider alternative medicine to be “hippy dippy” or “out there” but something to consider is that only a couple hundred years ago, “alternative medicine” was the only medicine available. Many of the home remedies currently recommended are sometimes more effective than their standard medicine counterparts.

Some of these methods might sound a bit off-the-wall, but the science behind them is quite sound. Many of the natural fungicides recommended and available on the market are faster acting than some oral prescriptions. Soaking your feet in vinegar may sound gross, not to mention smelly, but vinegar has been used for centuries as a powerful disinfectant. Again, these are remedies to be tried in the early stages of nail fungus infection. Once the toenail fungus has caused the nail to separate from the nail bed, immersing your feet in vinegar or Listerine will be very painful, very quickly.

The modern medical community has created its own solutions to the problem of toenail fungus by producing various pharmaceutical products to treat the infection. If you have caught the infection early on, it is most likely that your doctor will prescribe a clear coat medicated nail polish. If the infection isn’t cleared up by this product, the next stage is to try an oral antifungal medication. This is a step that should only be taken while under the care of a medical professional as some of these products carry the risk of serious side effects and internal organ damage. You will have to check in with your doctor regularly if you choose this option, which does make it very expensive. You will also need to let your doctor know all medications, supplements and herbal remedies you are taking as this will reduce the possibility of a negative drug reaction during the course of your treatment.

The best cure for toenail fungus infection is prevention and/or early detection. Most people don’t notice a toenail fungus infection until it has progressed fairly far along as this is not something that causes significant discomfort and as it is not a regularly exposed area, people aren’t that concerned about it. The sooner you act to kill the invading toenail fungus, the easier it will be to make their extermination permanent.

A Doctor’s Detailed Description of Onychomycosis

A Doctor’s Detailed Description of Onychomycosis

Onychomycosis is the medical term for a fungal infection of the fingernails or toenails. Onycho refers to the nail, mycosis refers to fungal infection. This condition represents about 33% of all fungal skin infections. Approximately half of all diagnosed diseases of the fingernails or toenails are onychomycosis.

Onychomycosis usually occurs in older people, most commonly 40 and above. The likelihood of the disease occurring in adults rather than children is about 30%. Onychomycosis is a regularly occurring disease and the chances of contracting it increase as people age. Approximately 20% of all people between the ages of 40 and 60 have onychomycosis. It is thought that upwards of 90% of elderly patients have it.

Onychomycosis occurances

Onychomycosis occurs more regularly in men than in women, however women are more likely to contract a specific type of the fungus called Candida. The disease seems to have no preference in race. There has been an increase in the number of cases of onychomycosis in recent years. Doctors believe this has to do with people living longer, thus facing the greater probability of diseases that are common causes of onychomycosis. For instance, the level of diabetes has increased in the population as well. The same corollary can be drawn between the aging population and the number of people with diabetes. Interestingly enough, having diabetes makes it more likely that a patient will contract onychomycosis as diabetics have a harder time fighting off infection and healing from wounds. Poor circulation is another commonly related disease as people who suffer from this have a less healthy immune system.

The most common symptom and complaint of sufferers of onychomycosis is the disfiguration of the nail. One of the greatest difficulties in catching a fungal nail infection early on is that it doesn’t present serious symptoms, especially in the beginning, when it is easiest to cure.

The fact that onychomycosis disfigures the nail is not to be disregarded. It causes people to avoid certain social interactions because of the embarrassment they feel having a nail fungus will bring. They become concerned that a fungal infection is infectious or that they will be seen as “unclean” or “unhealthy”. It is of serious concern to doctors, the psychological and emotional effect that onychomycosis can have on people.

Although this disease starts as a series of cosmetic symptoms, if left unchecked it can develop into a far more serious set of problems. Pain in the affected finger or toe can occur. Because the nail thickens, it deadens the sensitivity in the affected digits. This can lead to loss of sensation and therefore ability in the hands and feet. Tasks like writing and other daily activities are affected by fingernail fungus, being able to sense the floor, causing difficulty with walking and even causing serious falls, are an advanced symptom of toenail fungus. For patients who are already affected by diseases that cause problems with the nerves in the legs, this can make things even worse.

There are four main types of onychomycosis:

  • Distal subungual onychomycosis – This is the most common form of onychomycosis and is caused by a dermatophyte called Trichophyton rubrum. What happens is the dermatophyte penetrates the nail plate and buries itself in the nail bed. The term ‘subungual’ refers to underneath the nail. The infection manifests as a whitish-yellow growth under and on the nail towards the tip (the part you trim) This then works its way down toward the cuticule and underneath to the nail bed. The nail becomes thick, pitted, ridged and can start to crumble.
  • Proximal subungual onychomycosis – starts at the cuticle end of the nail instead of at the tip. It then works its way up the nail and under the nail as the nail grows out. This form of nail fungus infection occurs more regularly in people who have issues with immune deficiency. Proximal subungual onychomycosis is caused by Trichophyton ruburm, just as distal subungual onychomycosis is, but it is also caused by other fungi and molds.
  • White superficial onychomycosis – This is probably the least commonly occurring form of onychomycosis, happening in only 1 of 10 cases on average. This fungus develops on the top of the nail or in its topmost layers. As the name ‘white superficial’ would imply, this is a lesion that forms at the top of the nail and is white in color. Gradually, the fungus will take over the entire nail if left unchecked. Unlike most other forms of onychomycosis, white superficial onychomycosis is caused by Trichophyton mentagrophytes, a different dermatophyte.
  • Candida onychomycosis – This final form of onychomycosis starts out its life as chronic mucocutaneous candidas, or reoccurring mucous level or low level yeast infection. This tends to affect the skin surrounding the nail, specifically in the proximal and lateral nail folds. Usually multiple nails are affected by Candida onychomycosis and the nails can be fully destroyed by this more serious form of fungal infection.

References
Hainer BL. Dermatophyte infections. Am Fam Physician 2003;67:101-108.
Jaffe R. Onychomycosis: recognition, diagnosis, and management. Arch Fam Med 1998;7:587-592.
Kaur R, Kashyap B, Bhalla P. Onychomycosis–epidemiology, diagnosis and management. Indian J Med Microbiol 2008;26:108-116.

Nail Fungus Prevention Tips

Nail Fungus Prevention Tips

“An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.” So goes the old proverb and this is very true in the case of nail fungus prevention. Avoiding infection of your nails is a fairly simple process, but it does require diligence on your part. When you consider that once an infection has established itself, it is much more difficult to cure, working on prevention is in everyone’s best interest.

The main problem is that nail fungus is not choosy about who it attacks. If it can find a successful living environment, it will.

People who are most subject to nail fungus infections are:

  • People who sweat excessively in their hands and/or feet
  • People who already have some sort of nail disorder
  • People who have a weakened immune system

The risk of getting or not getting this disease seems to be fairly random. It will live wherever it can so “your best offense is a good defense”.

Prevention ideas

  • Wear some sort of protective footwear when you are in public places where there is a lot of water, locker rooms, public baths and swimming pools are good examples. As you have no idea who may accidentally pass the spores along, protecting your own feet is paramount.
  • Keep your nails short, clean, and dry. Trim and file your nails regularly to ensure that they are clean all over. Washing your hands and feet with soap and drying thoroughly afterward is also important as fungi like damp, dark places.
  • Use antifungal sprays or powders to fight off the spores you may have already accidentally collected. Air out and dry out your shoes after wearing (especially if your feet sweat) and change your socks daily or wear sandals as often as possible.
  • Don’t use nail polish as this locks in humidity and usually blocks light that might reach the fungus and help kill it off.
  • If you choose to get manicures or pedicures, check with your salon to make sure they sterilize all of their equipment.
  • Wash and dry your hands thoroughly before applying anything to your hands or feet and after applying ointment or medication anywhere else.
  • Do not pick at the skin around your nails as this can cause irritation and allow the fungus to invade your skin.
  • Pay attention to developing symptoms and if they show up, treat them early on to nip the infection in the bud
  • Eat a healthy and balanced diet so that your immune system is up to fighting off any infection that comes your way.

Your health is in your own hands so grab it and go with it to keep your nails looking healthy and happy.

Living With A Nail Fungus Infection

Living With A Nail Fungus Infection

Having a nail fungus infection does not single you out, in fact it makes you part of the 20% of the world population that is also afflicted with this disease. Although it is unsightly, it is possible to live with, and cure, if you’re willing to put in the effort it may take. If you’re reading this, you may already be affected with this rather common disease. Below is more information to help you.

Nail fungus is a microorganism that lodges and grows on and under the nail. It can occur on both the finger and toenails. In fact, it’s really not a very discriminating fungus as it will happily grow anywhere it can. The biggest problem with nail fungus is not that it can do much harm, but that it takes so long for an infected person to notice the discoloration in their nail, and usually even longer for them to do anything about it. By then, the fungus has worked its way underneath the nail sheath and into the nail bed where it is much harder to get at. The fungus’s goal is to find a warm, wet place to survive. The infected person’s goal is to get rid of the fungus and get their healthy nail back! The faster you notice and start treating a fungal nail infection, the more likely you are to cure yourself of it.

Avoid Becoming Infected in the First Place

The simplest solution to a nail fungus infection is not to get it to begin with. There are lots of easy precautions you can take to avoid this disease.

  • Think carefully about your regular day and where you might come into contact with these fungi. They tend to live in wet environments, like public bathrooms, locker rooms, public pools, etc. When you use these areas, make certain to wash your hands with an antibacterial soap. If you need to walk in these areas with exposed feet (for instance, to take a shower or get to the pool) wear a protective covering, like flip flops, to avoid contact with the fungus.
  • Don’t wear wet clothes for a long period of time. If you get soaked in the rain, try to dry off and change as soon as possible. If you’ve been swimming, change out of your suit and into dry clothes before leaving the pool. If you sweat a great deal while working out, shower, dry thoroughly and change into clean clothes before leaving the gym. This rule is especially true to avoid toenail fungus infection as many people don’t change their socks and shoes after exercise and that is an ideal breeding ground for nail fungus.
  • Stay healthy. Eat foods that will help you fight fungal infection, like yogurt and garlic. Take supplements of beta carotene, and vitamins B, C, D, and E. Use neem tree oil, tea tree oil, red thyme oil, and lemon oil on your skin to control a fungal infection if you contract one. Don’t eat yeast filled products, like brewer’s yeast or beer, if you have a nail fungus infection.

8 Good Questions to Ask About Nail Fungus

8 Good Questions to Ask About Nail Fungus

Nail fungus is a global problem. Many people do not understand how nail fungus infections are contracted, nor how to prevent them.

Here are 8 great questions, answered for your enlightenment, so you understand what fungal nail infections are and what causes them.

What is a nail fungus infection?

Dermaphytes, a microscopic organism are usually the culprit of nail fungus. As they are a fungal life form, they don’t require light to grow. The spores cause the nails to become yellowed and thick.

Why does the nail provide such a great place for the fungus to live?

Fungus likes to live where it is dark, warm and damp. The inside of socks and shoes is an ideal environment for these microorganisms to thrive.

Is everyone prone to contracting nail fungus?

Yes, everyone has the potential to develop a fungal nail infection. People become more prone to attack as they age.

Is it contagious?

It is, although it is most likely to be passed from person to person if you have abraded nails or damage to your skin. Public pools, locker rooms and public baths are all places where nail fungus spores are spread.

Are my fingernails or toenails more likely to become infected?

Toenails are more likely to become infected as they spend more time in enclosed environments and closer to the ground where the fungus may be living.

Is this infection dangerous?

Not in and of itself, although the infection can become serious if not treated. The disease becomes more dangerous if a patient has other diseases that make them more vulnerable to fungal nail infection.

Can I still wear nail polish?

No. While you are undergoing treatment of any kind for fungal nail infection your nails need to breathe. Nail polish creates a barrier between the air and your nail and it seals in humidity which make for a better growing environment for the fungus.

Will it go away on its own?

No it won’t. The faster you catch this infection, the easier it is to cure. The longer you let it go, the harder it will be to recover. Topical medications and home remedies can be very effective if you catch the problem early on.

asdadasda