Sunday, 24 April 2016

Fungal Nail infection: How does it occur?

A fungal nail infection starts to develop when fungus starts attacking the toenail, fingernail, or the nail bed. Fungi can attack the nails through tiny cuts within the skin or through the openings between the nail bed and nail.

If you have a healthy body, the infection will not cause any serious problems. However, it may hurt, look bad, or damage your nail bed. A nail infection may lead to serious health problems if you have a weak immune system or suffer from diabetes. Molds, yeasts, and different types of fungi can create fungal nail infections. Most can be caused by the same kind of fungus that leads to athlete's foot. Speak with an expert about the best way of treating the problem.

Symptoms:

Fungi grows best in moist, warm places, and they are also infectious. You can get a fungal infection by walking barefoot in public pools, showers or even by sharing items, such as nail clippers and towels. If you suffer from athlete's foot, the infection may also spread from the skin to the nails.

Nails that get fungal infection may:

  1. Get thicker.
  2. Start to turn white or yellow.
  3. Split or crumble.
  4. Separate from the skin.
Fungal nail infection can make it extremely painful and uncomfortable to walk, wear shoes, or stand for a very long time. The problem may also extend to other nails. Over the period, the infection can create permanent damage to the nail.

How to control the infection?

The diagnosis of a fungal nail infection is done by looking at the nail, analyzing the patient’s past health and symptoms, and performing tests to look for any fungi.

If you’ve decided to treat a nail infection, you must start with using an antifungal medicine that generally comes in the form of a lotion, cream, or nail polish. If the infection has become severe the doctor may also prescribe stronger medication. You may have to apply or consume this medicine for some weeks or as prescribed by the expert. 

Antifungal pills offer the best chance to cure a serious fungal infection. However, they may be costly and have side effects. It is important to get in touch with your doctor for testing if you start to take these pills.

Fungal infections have a tendency to come back. Hence, it is important to take extra care to prevent this.

  1. Wash and dry the feet before going to bed.
  2. Make sure you wear roomy shoes or sandals that allow moisture to seep out.
  3. Wear socks
  4. Do not share clippers or nail files, socks, and other such items.
  5. Wear shower sandals or flip-flops in wet public areas.
Remember, a few steps can go a long way in preventing nail infection. Also, if the infection gets strong make sure you visit your doctor to get the problem cured.

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