Fungi in the garden can make for good fertilizer. Some people enjoy fungi on pizza, as well. However, fungi and toenails are never considered such a welcome mix!
Toenail fungus, medically known as onychomycosis (which is a lot harder to say!), can turn perfectly healthy looking nails into a discolored, distorted, and unsightly mess. Left untreated, the condition will only get worse and can even lead to pain and discomfort wearing shoes or simply walking. At Complete Foot & Ankle Care, we can help you spot symptoms early and provide the treatment you need fast.
Tell-Tale Signs of Toenail Trouble
If you notice a small white or yellowish spot on your toenail, unfortunately, that’s a good sign that the fungus has found you! As the fungal infection takes hold, this discoloration can grow until the entire nail is yellow and dull. It can also become thick, brittle, crumbly, and misshapen. A serious case of toenail fungus can also result in serious odor! The infection can spread to other toenails as well and it may become difficult to comfortably wear shoes. You need help!
How the Fungus Found You
Fungi thrive in moist environments, like sweaty shoes and wet pool decks and gym showers. All it takes is a tiny cut near the nail bed, and the fungus can enter, set up camp beneath the nail, and take over! The condition is stubborn, too, and hard to get rid of once contracted. To lower your risk, always wear shower shoes in locker rooms and other public areas. Never share towels or footwear. Keep feet clean and dry. Sterilize pedicure tools, or if you visit a nail salon, make sure they sanitize between clients. In addition, choose moisture-wicking socks and shoes made from breathable materials. It’s also a good idea to rotate the shoes you wear to allow for each pair to dry adequately. You can even apply anti-fungal sprays or powders to your feet and inside shoes. If all else fails, and the fungus does indeed find you, not to worry—we’re on it!
Fighting Toenail Fungus
There are various topical products you can find in stores, but most typically prove to be unsuccessful. We can provide you with prescription-strength topical or oral medications that are often more effective; however, your best bet is our state-of-the-art laser treatments. Our PinPointe laser uses concentrated light to eradicate the fungus exactly where it has taken hold, stopping the infection at its source without harming or disturbing surrounding tissue. It may take a few treatments, but it is highly effective, safe, and pain-free, and you will see a new, healthy nail grow in before you know it!
In severe cases of fungal infection, we can also surgically remove the damaged nail and treat the infection beneath. This is rarely needed, however, and usually, our PinPointe laser is all it takes to do the trick!
If you’d like to learn more, have any questions, or want to schedule an appointment, you can contact our Prescott, AZ office at (928) 776-9428. Our helpful staff is always ready to assist!