Treating Fungal Nails
Toenail fungus is a more common condition than many might initially believe. Approximately 30 million Americans have a fungal toenail infection!
Regardless of its frequency, toenail fungus still carries an unsightly and embarrassing stigma for many sufferers. Most people with fungal toenails would rather get rid of the condition, but home remedies tend not to have much of an effect.
And for many, toenail fungus is not something that will easily disappear. It can be a chronic disease that lasts a lifetime and requires a long-term plan to battle.
If you’re seeking effective, professional treatment of toenail fungus – both now and well into the future – come to Family Foot Care and Surgery. Dr. Patel and Dr. Harpaz will determine the severity of your fungal infection and tailor a precise plan to help you manage this dreaded condition. We carry advanced tools such as laser therapy among other treatment options to meet the specialized needs of our patients.
What Is Toenail Fungus? What Does It Look Like?
Toenail fungus is indeed a fungus. It belongs to a class called “dermatophytes” which is also where the fungus that causes athlete’s foot belongs.
This fungus thrives on a protein called keratin, which just happens to be abundant in your nail plate. They can sneak beneath the nail through tiny cuts or any other opening between the nail and skin.
While toenail fungus can wreak havoc on your nails’ appearance over time, an infection is not so obvious to start. You might first see a tiny whitish or yellowish blemish in the nail, and it’s easy to assume it’s from some little nick or bump you received. But if the blemish doesn’t disappear over time – and grows or changes shape instead – it’s a good call to come and see us. Identifying and treating fungus this early can make things much shorter and sweeter!
But everyone is more familiar with a fungal infection that has had more time to develop. Symptoms at this stage can include:
- Yellowish, whitish, or brownish discoloration
- Thickening of the nails
- Crumbling or brittleness
- Warped or distorted shape
- In some cases, a faint foul aroma
The fungus has had significant time to work its way into the nail and nail bed by this time. It is more of a challenge to root out than it is when caught earlier, but still very much possible with the right treatment.