Know More About Fungal Nail Infections!

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By Dr. Ganesh Avhad, Dermatology

Fungal infection in the nails is caused due to the growth of fungi. When the growth of fungus happens on the fingernails or toenails, it is known as onychomycosis or tinea unguium. Here are some of the risk factors which trigger such infections:

People at risk-

1. Have diabetes
2. Have a problem with their circulatory system
3. Are over 65
4. Have artificial nails
5. Swim in public pools
6. Have nail injuries
7. Have skin injuries around the nail
8. Have moist fingers or toes for a long time
9. Have immune system problems
10. Wear closed-toe shoes

Symptoms-

There are several symptoms which can indicate a fungal infection in your nails. These are:

1. Scaling under the skin
2. White or yellow streaks on the nail
3. A crumbling corner or tip of the nail
4. Flaking white areas on the nail’s surface
5. Yellow spots at the bottom of the nail
6. Loss of nail
7. A nail which comes off from the rest
8. A smell coming from the nail
9. A brittle or thickened nail

However, a fungal nail infection can be prevented as well simply by taking the following steps

Prevention-

The best way to avoid this is to keep it well trimmed and clean. However, there are some other measures as well that can be considered:

1. Using antifungal sprays
2. Washing your hands after touching infected nails
3. Drying your feet when wet
4. Wearing rubber gloves if the nails will be wet for an extended period of time
5. Getting safe manicures and pedicures
6. Avoid walking barefoot in public places
7. Reducing use of artificial nails

Treatment

Finally, if you do get a fungal infection in your nail, oral antifungal medications are prescribed usually.



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