Fungus Got Your Toes? Zap It!

Do you have thick, yellowish, brittle, and easily cracked or broken toenails without having injured them? They are likely discolored due to a fungal infection called onychomycosis, which is the most common disease of the nails.

The nail weakens as fungi continue to grow through the nail tissue. Since fungus grows faster than the nail, damage increases and the nail becomes more and more unsightly, with the infection spreading to the root or base of the nail.

Yeast and molds are also suspected to cause toenail fungus. These types of fungi exist in warm and moist environments, like shower areas, locker rooms, and swimming pools, and even your shoes (as toes are usually encased in shoes). Other factors include age, history of family infection or heredity, smoking, and heavy perspiration. People with circulatory problems, weak immune systems, or diabetes are at greater risk of developing fungal infections.

Nail fungus has been difficult to treat with success. The only options in the past have been topical or oral medications, which provide limited benefit. In addition, oral medication may cause liver damage. Now there is a safe, effective laser treatment for nail fungus. The laser destroys the fungus that causes onychomycosis with very little effect on the surrounding tissues. Treatment normally takes fewer than 20 minutes and there is no pain, although sometimes you may experience a warm or tingling sensation. There are no age or health restrictions for laser treatments.

Laser toenail treatment is considered aesthetic (cosmetic). Therefore, most health insurance plans do not cover treatment, and it can be costly. Consult with your podiatric physician to determine if this course of treatment is right for you.

There are some other preventive steps you can take to avoid reoccurrence of toenail fungus infection. They include keeping the toenails short and clean to stop the growth or worsening of the infection; following a scrupulous hygiene program; using anti-fungal spray on feet and shoes; avoiding going barefoot; keeping feet clean and dry; and changing socks daily. If you suffer from nail fungus, contact Houston Foot Specialists and Dr. Bowman can help you be free from thick, brittle and yellowish nails!

Category: Nail Problems

Tags: Barefoot, Brittle Nails, foot pain, Footwear, Fungus Inflection, Health Insurance, Laser Treatment, Nail Fungus, Onychomycosis, Oral Treatment, shoes, Thick Nails, Toenail Pain, Topical Treatment, Yellow Nails