Nail fungus – causes and treatments

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Nail fungus – causes and treatments

The nail fungus, known medically as onychomycosis, is quite common. However, the number of reported cases seems to be on the rise in the past couple of decades. In part, this may be because people are more comfortable talking about this condition than in previous years.

Although the condition is most commonly associated with toenails, the condition can also affect fingernails. The problem is exacerbated by the fact that nail fungus is caused by several reasons that make it even more difficult to diagnose and treat.

Nail fungus often starts at the tip and, if left unchecked, begins to grow down the nail into the cuticle. It can also infect the sides of the nail and sometimes even the surrounding skin.

Another form is white superficial onychomycosis, which first grows on the outer layers of the nail. However, if left untreated, it begins to grow into the nail’s different layers, making them spongy and soft.

The third type of fungus grows under the skin around the nail and finally spreads towards the center.

Some of the fungi that cause the disease are associated with candidal infections and result from nail trauma, such as ingrown toenails. This type also affects people who immerse their nails, hands or feet in water for extended periods.

Mushrooms are unique in that they don’t need light to survive. They like to hide in humid places like hot tubs, swimming pools, and showers. Therefore, they tend to only survive on nails or skin, which are also in the same warm and humid conditions, possibly due to heavy socks and shoes, which is why they are more common in the feet than in the hands.

Aging is a common cause of nail fungus, as is decreased blood flow. Certain medical conditions such as diabetes, athlete’s foot, and psoriasis can also cause this condition.

Symptoms of nail fungus

Onychomycosis symptoms include:

Brittle or crumbling nails.

Discoloration or tarnishing of nails.

Thickening of the nail bed.

An unusually distorted shape.

The affected nails may separate from the skin, but this is not enough to remove the nail without surgery.

Some nail fungi are uncomfortable or even painful and may have an unusual odor.

How to treat nail fungus

There are two main types of treatment for onychomycosis. The first is an antibiotic, which is almost always taken orally. Another involves the topical treatment, usually with varnish or paste. The type of treatment option will depend on the type and severity of the fungus affected.

Topical treatments are less expensive and have fewer side effects. Some people even prefer home remedies like apple cider vinegar, hydrogen peroxide, or tea tree oil. Soaking the affected nails with clean apple cider vinegar at least twice a day for half an hour often helps with mild fungal infections. However, this takes time, usually several weeks or even months.

This 3% hydrogen peroxide soak is also effective in some cases. Again, this should be done at least twice a day for weeks or months to see any changes.

Tea tree oil is a natural germ-fighter, so it can also be effective in treating onychomycosis. The foot must first be thoroughly washed and patted dry completely. Then apply tea tree oil twice a day with a small brush or cotton swab, covering all infected nails. Be sure to wear cotton socks to prevent the oil from staining the carpet, furniture, bedding, or other clothing. Once the fungus has cleared up, continue treating the nail as a preventative measure.

Penlac nail polish is usually prescribed. It is usually brushed onto your nails once a day, although your doctor may give you alternative instructions. It is generally not recommended to use Penlac with other antifungal medications as it may interact negatively with them – always tell your doctor about any other medications you are using.

There are side effects associated with Penlac. The most common are blistering, burning, nail reshaping, ingrown toenails, nail discoloration, oozing around the nail, rashes, and redness. These or any other symptoms should be reported to your doctor. Besides, if a woman becomes pregnant or starts breastfeeding, she should see her doctor for instructions before further treatment.

This slows down or eliminates ergosterol production, which is necessary for the nail fungus to calm down. The cream is applied directly to and around the affected nails until the fungus is destroyed. Lamisil cream also has some side effects. These include burning, itching, redness, and tingling. These symptoms should be reported to the doctor before reusing the cream. Lamisil tablets can be prescribed for onychomycosis.

Another oral medication used for treatment is Sporanox. And this and Lamisil tablets are effective in many cases. They help the new nails grow so that the old nail can be thrown away or cut off. However, oral medications can be dangerous and can cause side effects ranging from skin rashes to, in extreme cases, liver damage. For this reason, these medications must be taken under medical supervision and strictly as prescribed.

How to avoid nail fungus

While it is impossible to avoid all types of nail fungus, you can take steps to help.

Avoid walking barefoot in public areas such as pools, spas, and gyms.

Choose socks that allow your skin to breathe.

Stay away from shoes that are too tight or tight.

Avoid constant contact with wet, damp areas at work or home.

See your doctor for any injury to your nail.

Onychomycosis is ugly and spoils the beautiful appearance of the nails. For this reason, it is important to treat it right away. Better yet, take all possible steps to avoid this.

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