What Happens If You Leave Toenail Fungus Untreated
All fungal infections are contagious and can spread quickly. Nail fungus can not only be contracted from an existing fungal infection from another part of your body, but nail fungus can also spread and create a fungal infection to another part of your body.
Thats to say, not only could Athletes foot cause a toenail infection, your toenail infection can cause athletes foot which could then be potentially spread to jock itch while putting on underwear that brushed up against your fungaly toes and carried the highly contagious infection to your crotch via the underwear express.
It works both ways.
Not only is it important to treat nail fungus so it doesnt spread elsewhere, its important to treat any other fungal infections you may have to avoid the risk of infecting your nails or re-infecting your nails, after treating your nail fungus.
When To See A Doctor
It is recommended to see a doctor when you see abnormal changes in the appearance or color of your toenails. It may indicate underlying causes such as diabetes, psoriasis or nail fungal infection.
You may choose to try some home remedies but if the symptoms do not resolve, it is advisable to see a dermatologist or a podiatrist. Treating thick toenails on your own at home is not advisable.
Treatments Available For Thick Yellow Toenails
Once you have realized there is a problem with your toenails the first step is to take away the environment that fungus likes to thrive. As previously mentioned, moist, warm, enclosed areas are perfect for the growth of fungus. Keep your feet as dry as possible and out in the open as often as possible.
Most importantly, apply a treatment that can cure this condition once and for all. So, lets now have a look at popular treatment options that you can try to treat the condition yourself.
Home Remedies Might Improve Your Condition But Rarely Solve The Problem
The first thing to start doing is grooming your toenails regularly. Keeping the nail short and well-manicured will limit the risk of fungus growing under the nail. If you find it difficult to groom the nails then you could apply creams to soften the nail first. Suggestions to soften the nails are applying urea cream before you go to bed and wearing a tube sock or bandage until the cream has soaked into the nails.
Snakeroot has become a popular home-based treatment because of its botanic origin and none pharmaceutical makeup. It goes by a number of names such as snakeweed, sangree root and pelican flower. It was reported by some patients affected by thick yellow toenails to decrease the symptom when it is smeared on the infected toe in extract form over a period of months. It should be noted that this plant has toxic qualities so make sure to avoid taking it orally at all costs.
Effective Over-The-Counter Treatments
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What Is The Outcome For Someone Who Has Nail Fungus
With treatment, many people can get rid of nail fungus. Even when the fungus clears, your nail may look unhealthy until the infected nail grows out. A fingernail grows out in 4 to 6 months and a toenail in 12 to 18 months.
To clear the fungus, its important to:
Use the treatment exactly as prescribed
Apply the medicine for as long as prescribed
Keep all follow-up appointments with your dermatologist
Nail fungus can be stubborn. If you had a severe infection, its possible to clear the infection. A healthy looking nail, however, may be unrealistic, but you can expect the nail to look better and feel more comfortable.
Even with clearing, nail fungus can return. Youll find steps to reduce your risk in Tips: 12 ways to prevent another nail infection.
ReferenceGold LFS and Rosen T. Onychomycosis: Diagnosis, treatment, and prevention strategies. Dermatology News . March 2016:2-15.
What Causes Thick Toenails
Toenail fungus or onychomycosis is one of the most common fungal infections that causes thick nails. Fungal infections tend to occur in toenails because they provide a warm, moist environment for fungus to grow, especially if you wear the same sweaty shoes or boots every day or work in wet conditions. It is also commonly seen in people with long-standing diabetes mellitus.
In the earlier stages, the fungus may only cause minor discoloration to the nail, but as the disease progresses, the nail can become hard and brittle. Later, as the infection becomes more severe, the thickened nail finally starts to split away from the nail bed. People with diabetes are at a higher risk of fungal infection.
Repeated microtrauma or injury to the toes can cause damage to toenails and result in their thickening over time. It often involves more than one toenail, and sometimes all of them.
This type of injury occurs most often to people who play sports such as soccer, but it can also be caused by wearing ill-fitting shoes.
Psoriasis is an autoimmune disorder that causes diffuse red, scaly patches on the skin. It often presents with the thickening of both fingernails and toenails. With psoriasis, ridges may develop on the nails, and the nails may loosen and separate from the nail bed.
Paronychia is a skin condition that causes swelling and redness around the nail. With multiple infections, both fingernails and toenails can become thick.
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How To Get Rid Of Thick Toenails Fast And Naturally
Are one or more of your toenails becoming thicker than the others and become more difficult to cut?
Are they discolored, smelly, thickened, and just downright ugly?
After suffering from thick toenails for 6+ years, I can understand your frustrations. I want to help you and provide you with all the information you need to know about thick toenails.
In this article, you are going to learn the signs of thickened toenails caused by a fungus, treatment options, and some of the most effective products to restore your fungus-infested nails.
What Are The Types Of Mycotic Nails
Mycotic nails are divided into seven types:
- Distal subungual onychomycosis: This type is the most common. The infection starts on the distal edge or sides of your nail and spreads from there. Your nail may turn white, brown or yellow.
- Proximal subungual onychomycosis: The infection originates from the proximal nail fold . In the U.S., the most common organism that causes proximal subungual onychomycosis is called T. rubrum.
- Superficial onychomycosis: The superficial layers of your nail are the very top ones. The infection starts in those layers and then goes deeper. Your nail will most likely turn white. The organism that causes this type is called T. mentagraphytes.
- Edonyx onychomycosis: Edonyx onychomycosis is where the interior of the nail plate is infected, but not the nail bed .
- Totally dystrophic onychomycosis: This is the end stage of the distal or proximal types. At this phase your nail is extra thick and taller because of extra keratin.
- Yeast onychomycosis: Yeast onychomycosis, often caused by Candida, is more likely to affect your fingernails than your toenails. It may be a sign that your immune system isnt working at its best .
- Fungal melanonychia: Fungal melanonychia is the least common type of onychomycosis. Fungi such as Scytalidium, Alternaria and Exophiala cause a brownish or blackish color.
You can ask about what type of nail fungus you have when you see your healthcare provider for a diagnosis.
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Which Symptoms Are Associated With Thick Toenails
Thickening of the toenail is the primary symptom of the infection. It may be associated with the following changes,
- Change in toenail color to yellow, brown, or green
- Toenails look scaly or chalky
- Toenails with dirt and built-up dead cells underneath
- Toenail appears lifted from the nail bed
- Toenails crumble or split
- Discomfort or pain is experienced
At an early stage, these symptoms are mild or may even go unnoticed. As the infection advances, the symptoms aggravate and lead to discomfort and pain.
How Do You Get A Fungal Nail Infection
Most fungal nail infections occur as a result of the fungi that cause athlete’s foot infecting the nails.
These fungi often live harmlessly on your skin, but they can sometimes multiply and lead to infections. The fungi prefer warm, dark and moist places like the feet.
You’re more likely to get a fungal nail infection if you:
- don’t keep your feet clean and dry
- wear shoes that cause your feet to get hot and sweaty
- walk around barefoot in places where fungal infections can spread easily, such as communal showers, locker rooms and gyms
- have damaged your nails
- have a weakened immune system
- have certain other health conditions, such as diabetes, psoriasis or peripheral arterial disease
Fungal nail infections can be spread to other people, so you should take steps to avoid this if you have an infection.
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The Process Of Getting Rid Of Thick Yellow Toenail Fungus
1. Inspect your toenails to see if you can spot any of the symptoms mentioned in earlier.
2. If you spot any irregularity the first measure should to keep your feet dry and away from hot moist conditions as much as possible.
3. Try to cure toenail fungus with natural remedies free of side effects, preferably over-the-counter topical solutions that blend natural ingredients in therapeutic dosage for maximum strength and are more prone to lead to a definite cure. In most cases an efficient OTC treatment is all you need to get rid of yellow nail fungus.
4. If the fungus does not regress, consider the laser option or consult your doctor for a prescription drug .
5. Continue your treatment until the infection has completely disappeared.
What The Experts Say
The most common presentation of toenail fungus is a white/yellow discoloration of the nail that is thick and filled with yellow/white keratin debris. The more severe the toenail fungus, the thicker the nail, and the more nails involved makes it that much harder to treat the nails even with effective therapies.”Orit Markowitz, MD, founder and CEO of OptiSkin treatment center in New York City.
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How Can I Reduce My Risk Of Developing Mycotic Nails
You can reduce your risk of developing mycotic nails by taking steps to care for your feet and nails. Steps include:
- Wash your feet in lukewarm water with mild soap.
- Completely dry your feet after you wash them.
- Look at the bottom and top of each foot. Immediately care for any sores, blisters, cuts or scratches.
- Dont share nail clippers.
- Clip your nails short.
- Dont walk barefoot in public showers or locker rooms.
- Make sure your nail salon sterilizes its instruments after every use.
Do the following if you think a nail is infected:
- Soak it in lukewarm, soapy water or in lukewarm water with Epsom salt.
- Put on an antiseptic ointment.
- Put on a bandage.
Fungal infections should be taken seriously. Dont hesitate to see a healthcare provider.
Nail Fungus Consumer Review
Everyone looks forward to summer when they can finally put away their winter clothes and slip into their flip flops and lightweight shirts. However, if you have thick yellow toenails, the thought of walking around in flip flops might seem a little daunting.
Yellow toenails that are thick and slowly turn brown is quite common and affects up to 14% of the population in the US and up to 20% in Europe and Asia. But most people dont proactively seek a cure for this condition until it becomes so extreme it can be quite painful to wear shoes and walk.
Worse than it, the large majority isnt aware that thick yellow toenails can impact their overall health in a scary manner!
Lets take a look at the symptoms, causes and health implications of yellow toenails to decide if you need to worry. Then we will review the different treatment options available with a recommendation for the ones that can lead to a definite cure safely and efficiently.
Read on to gain expertise on those thick yellow toenails and how to treat them.
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How Do You Get Rid Of Buildup Under Your Toenails
That thick white stuff under your toenails is a buildup of keratin caused by a fungal infection. In order to remedy the problem, you have to treat the cause, not the symptom.
Whereas the other types of fungal infections are relatively easy to treat with a topical antifungal, toenail fungus is much more difficult.
What makes nail fungus harder to treat is that its extremely difficult to get any type of topical medication to penetrate the nail. That, and the nail plate is very slow-growing, so treatment takes a lot longer.
Deformed Or Brittle Nails
A violent toe-stubbing, dropping a heavy object on the toe or some other trauma can injure the nail bed and cause the nail to grow in a deformed way. The nail may be thickened or ridged. It is a normal ageing process for nails to thicken.Deformed or brittle toenails can benefit from regular professional attention. Trimming, shaping and nail care from a podiatrist can improve the health of your toenails and help diagnose and treat more serious nail problems.
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How To Prevent Thick Toenails
You can prevent thick toenails by the following measures,
Keep your feet and hands clean by following good hygiene practices. Dry them immediately after a wash
- Walking barefoot at home to let your feet breathe
- Avoid walking barefoot in public places
- Disinfect your nail trimming tool kit regularly
- Avoid constant exposure to wet areas
- Wear flip-flops in locker or sauna rooms
- Use a foot powder to keep them dry and clean
- Moisture your feet regularly using a thick moisturizer to soften your nails
How To Get Rid Of Thick Toe Nails
**Thickened yellow nails are usually a side effect of toenail fungus 1. Toenail fungus settles in the sensitive skin under the toenail and causes brittleness, thickness and discolortion of the toenail itself 1. Treatment options are effective however toenail fungus can return if treatment is cut short or proper foot care is not followed according to the Mayo Clinic 1.
Clean your feet and toenails thoroughly on a daily basis. Use an antibacterial soap to make sure that you clean well between the toes and around the toenail 1. After cleansing, dry your feet and nails well to avoid excess moisture under the toenail 1. Moisture helps with bacterial and fungal growth.
Clip your nails with clippers that have been well sterilized in alcohol. Clip the nail straight across and file down sharp edges. Sterilize your clippers and nail file after use, If using an emory board, throw it in the garbage.
Wear synthetic socks that are well absorbant. Sweat from your feet and shoes will promote fungal growth worsening the condition. Maintaining a dry environment for your feet will stop fungal growth by providing unlivable conditions fungus and bacteria.
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Stop This Skin Infection In Its Tracks With These Over
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Verywell Health / Sabrina Jiang
Toenail fungus is a common fungal condition that often starts after a rash on the foot spreads to the nails. When mild, it looks like white and yellow spots growing under the nail beds. But if left untreated, the fungus can grow severely by hardening the nails and spreading to other toes.
The fungus often begins in the form of athlete’s foot between the toes or on the soles of the feet. At this stage, the fungal infection is easier to treat with over-the-counter medication. But Shari Lipner, MD, a board-certified dermatologist at New York-Presbyterian Hospital/Weill Cornell Medicine, told Verywell Health toenail fungus can be difficult to treat because of how slow the nails grow. The more severe the toenail fungus, the thicker the nail, and the more nails involved makes it that much harder to treat the nails even with effective therapies, she says.
Diagnosing the fungal infection early is key to make treatments effective. Dr. Lipner recommends visiting a board-certified dermatologist to properly treat the infection if it grows to be too severe.
Here are a few of the best over-the-counter toenail fungus treatments on the market.
What Causes Thick And Gnarly Toenails
The most commonreasons for thick or gnarly toenails are the following:
Fungal infections such as tinea occur most commonly in the toenails. Thats because the warm and moist environment is ideal for fungus to grow and spread. The fungus distorts the growth of the nail affecting the nailbed. The signs are yellow or splitting toenails which lead to thickening.
Trauma or injury tothe nail can happen in three different ways:
- A heavy object droppedon the top of the nail bed will cause injury and trauma and the result is a thickenednail. This eventually grows out.
- Stubbing the end ofyour toenail causes trauma directed back into the nailbed, this will thicken thenail and will also eventually grow out.
- Dropping somethingheavy on the nail matrix however, where the nail grows from, can cause permanentnail thickening.
As the body ages, thegrowth of toenails slows down as cell renewal slows, and less keratin is produced.The toenails can become brittle, prone to splitting, may also thicken andbecome discoloured.
Psoriasis is acondition of the skin forming red, scaly patches which can be itchy and uncomfortable.Psoriasis can also extend to the toenails, causing ridges and thickening of thenail. The nailbed may also lift as a result of psoriasis.
Its essential to keep your feet clean and dry and use antiseptic lotions or barrier creams if necessary
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