Many people have a low-grade fungal toenail infection that doesn’t cause any problems, but as the infection spreads, the toenail will become thicker, brittle, and more and more discolored turning grey and brown. An awful odor is also emitted by the fungi. People who have circulation and immune system problems are more likely to develop fungal and other microbial infections.
Some noninvasive and easy ways to treat and prevent fungal toenail infections include the following:
- Correct toenail cutting technique—Improper cutting can cause an ingrown toenail, which will allow fungi and bacteria to get under the toenail. Trim your toenails straight across and a little long to avoid causing ingrown toenails.
- Air out your shoes—Let your shoes dry out for a couple of days to help kill any microbes.
- Antifungal topicals and oral medications—These can be applied to your feet and inside your shoes to kill the fungi. Oral medications can also be used to attack the microbes from within.
- Wash and dry your feet carefully—Keep your feet clean and dry to decrease the conditions that are favorable to fungi and bacteria. Use talcum powder to absorb moisture and wear breathable socks and shoes to wick away moisture.
- Avoid contact with the fungi—Public places like gyms, locker rooms, showers, and pool areas are covered with germs and fungi. Wear shower shoes or sandals to help prevent your feet from coming into contact.
Since advanced fungal toenail infections can be very difficult to properly treat on your own, talk to your podiatrist about therapies involving debridement and complete nail removal and regrowth. At Family Foot & Ankle Clinic, Dr. Stephen Markantone treats a wide variety of foot and ankle conditions, including sports injuries, diabetic foot issues, pediatric foot conditions, toe and foot deformities, fungal infections, and heel problems. Equipped with the most advanced technologies and dedicated staff, Family Foot & Ankle Clinic provides individualized and high-quality care for patients in the North Versailles and Delmont, PA areas. Contact our North Versailles office at 412-824-9370 or our Delmont office at 724-733-3338 to schedule an appointment.