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What Fungus Causes Toenail Fungus

Recurring Genital Or Urinary Tract Infections

Toenail Fungus, What Causes This? Dr. Richard Jacoby

Candida is found in the vaginal tracts of most women.

An overgrowth of it can lead to candidiasis of the vagina, also known as a yeast infection.

Its estimated that 75% of all women will get at least one vaginal yeast infection in their lifetime, and half of those will have at least one recurrence .

Men can also get genital yeast infections, but its much less common.

Symptoms of vaginal candidiasis include redness, swelling, itching, painful intercourse and a thick, white discharge from the vagina.

Although its much less common, Candida can also cause a urinary tract infection .

Candida-related urinary tract infections are most common in the elderly, hospitalized or immune-compromised individuals .

Symptoms of a UTI include a burning feeling when you urinate, a frequent urge to urinate, cloudy, dark or strange-smelling urine and pain or pressure in your lower abdomen.

Although, other bacteria like E. coli are more likely to cause UTIs.

However, if you suffer from recurring infections and believe they are a result of Candida overgrowth, you can have your urine tested to find out.

Summary:Candida can cause genital and urinary tract infections, both of which can lead to pain and discomfort.

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.

How Can One Get Rid Of Toenail Fungus

Toenail Fungus can be treated in multiple ways.

  • 1. Over the Counter Treatments

Over the counter gets, creams, soaks, sprays, and oral medicines can work best when your toenail fungus is mild and has just begun.

You may use products containing Undecylenic Acid, Tolnaftate, Clotrimazole, Terbinafine, or Tea Tree Oil.

  • 2. Essential Oils

Milder Toenail Fungus can be treated with the application of diluted essential oils. Eucalyptus, Tea Tree, Lavender, Cinnamon , Lemon or Lemon Grass Essential Oils can be used for topical treatment of Toenail Fungus.

  • 3. Home Remedies

Some home remedies can be very effective in controlling the infection. These remedies can prevent the fungi from entering the tissue and spreading to the bloodstream.

Garlic, onion, ginger and lemon are the most common ingredients used in the treatment of toenail fungus.

  • 4. Diet & Exercise

Toenail Fungus has a lot to do with your immune system or your bodys natural defense mechanism.

If you eat healthy foods and exercise well, there are chances your immunity raises and fights the fungi.

Science explains how our bodys soldiers can destroy the thriving fungi within days if we have the right amount of them.

  • 5. Nail Hygiene

Maintaining hygiene is very important. As fungi can grow and multiply easily in moist and humid environments, you have to take care your toenails excessively.

Trimming and shaping the toenails can reduce chances of fungi entering your skin and prevents spread of infection.

Read Also: How To Get Fungus Out Of Toenails

What Are The Symptoms

A nail with a fungal infection may:

  • Turn yellow or white.
  • Get thicker.
  • Crumble and split, and it may separate from the skin.

When you have a fungal nail infection, it can be uncomfortable or even painful to wear shoes, walk, or stand for a long time. The fungus could also spread to other nails or your skin. Over time, the infection can cause permanent damage to your nail or nail bed.

How Would I Know If I Have A Nail Infection

Laser Toenail Fungus Treatment (2021)

Fungus grows in warm, moist places such as under nails. When fungus has a chance to grow in the nail, it can turn into a fungal infection, which is a common problem. Typical signs of a fungal infection include new white or yellow patches and streaks, but nails can also turn brown or green. Youll see lifting of the nail from the skin underneath, and sometimes you will see thickening of the nail. The nail will look bumpy or have ridges with crumbly debris underneath. It may even be so misshapen that it seems to be veering off to the side, or the nail may fall off completely.

If the infection is caused by bacteria instead of a fungus, you may notice redness, swelling, pain or pus in the skin surrounding the nail.

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So How Long Does It Take For A Toenail To Regrow

A good long while.

After losing a toenail to fungus, or an injury, it can take up to a year or a year and a half for it to fully grow back. But youâll start to see the nail beginning to grow back in after a few months.

This new growth is vulnerable to the fungus that remains on the area so treating this new growth is important to avoid recurrence.

What Are The Causes Of Toenail Fungus

Essentially, there are three types of fungus that can cause toenails to become infected: yeast, mold, and dermatophyte. A yeast toenail infection is usually white, a mold infection is generally a dull brown, and a dermatophyte infection is generally yellow. These various causes have different treatment options, so its important to find out exactly what kind of toenail fungus you have before taking any severe measures to treat it.

Read Also: How Can I Get Rid Of Toenail Fungus

When Should You Call Your Doctor

  • Increased pain, swelling, redness, tenderness, or heat.
  • Red streaks extending from the area.
  • Discharge of pus.
  • Fever of 38°C or higher with no other cause.
  • A fungal infection appears to be spreading to the skin under the nail, the nail itself, or the surrounding skin.
  • The infected area is painful.
  • A thickened toenail causes discomfort.
  • Your nail’s appearance concerns you.

If you think you have a fungal nail infection, see your doctor. Your doctor can check your nail and recommend ways to treat it.

About Fungal Nail Infection

What is toenail fungus?

Many people develop a fungal nail infection at some point in their life. It’s not usually serious, but can be unpleasant and difficult to treat.

The infection develops slowly and causes the nail to become discoloured, thickened and distorted.

Toenails are more frequently affected than the fingernails.

The medical name for a fungal nail infection is onychomycosis.

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Is It Toenail Fungus Or Something Else

Odd-looking toenail? It may be a fungal infection, but there’s a good chance that another condition could be to blame.

If you notice an odd spot on your toenail, you might assume its a fungal infection. However, theres a good chance that its not.

Spots or discolorations on or under a toenail could be bruises resulting from trauma to the nail, blood blisters, warts, or even subungual melanoma, a type of skin cancer, says Ami Sheth, a doctor of podiatric medicine in Los Gatos, California, and a spokesperson for the American Podiatric Medical Association.

Since nail irregularities can be caused by diseases besides these as well, its best to get it looked at, says Dr. Sheth.

Richard Goad, a doctor of podiatric medicine at Baylor Scott & White Health in Waco, Texas, concurs. Sometimes the nail will be the first place to show another underlying problem, Dr. Goad says.

So is it a fungus, a false alarm, or another condition entirely?

Can A Black Toenail Cause Complications

Toenail fungus thats left untreated can spread throughout your feet and other parts of your body. It can also cause permanent nail damage.

Complications can also arise from melanoma in the toenail thats mistaken for trauma-induced black toenail. Its important to see your doctor if you notice any black spots that might be spreading throughout the nail, or if they dont go away despite your toenail growing out.

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When To See A Doctor Over Toenail Fungus

The cause of your toenail fungal infection might be an underlying health problem. In some cases, it might just be too severe and hence difficult to get rid of it at home, although there are no underlying problems.

You may want to see a doctor over toenail fungus for further examination, advice, diagnosis, and treatment. After all, there are many other health problems that may cause signs and symptoms similar to those of toenail fungus. Therefore, see your doctor in case the following happens:

  • If the self-care steps and home remedies have not helped you deal with the toenail fungus
  • The signs and symptoms such as discoloration, thickening, and deformation of your toenails become worse with time despite treatment with over-the-counter or prescription medications.
  • If you also have other signs and symptoms that may suggest underlying conditions such as diabetes or poor immunity system that could be complicating treatment or aggravating your toenail fungus condition.
  • Can Toenail Fungus Spread To Your Other Toes

    Toenail Fungus: Pictures, Treatment, Home Remedies ...

    If you have a fungal toenail infection, the last thing you want is more of it. Even one discolored, thick, brittle, jagged, and/or misshapen toenail is already more than enough.

    Unfortunately, the answer to the question of whether toenail fungus to spread to other toes is a definite yes. And not only can it spread to more of your toes, it can also spread to your fingernails, your skin, and other people as well!

    How does the fungus spread so easily, and what can you do to fight back? Were happy to help you with that!

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    Risk Factors For Toenail Fungus

    Who is most susceptible to toenail fungus? You are more likely to get toenail fungus due to various factors that subject your toenails to fungi or increase your vulnerability to it. The common risk factors for toenail fungal infection include:

  • Old age: The likelihood of developing toenail fungus increases at old age. This is because at old age there is reduced blood flow and your nails grow at a slower rate. In addition, you are more vulnerable to fungi, having been exposed to it for many years
  • Heavy sweating: Sweaty feet create a conducive environment for fungus to thrive and multiply. The fungi may attack the toenails, leading to a fungal toenail infection.
  • Wearing tight-fitting shoes: This prevents the foot or toes from breathing, making them sweat a lot. This results in a warm and damp condition that encourages growth of fingi.
  • Athlete foot infection: Those who have a history of athletes foot, which is also a fungal infection, are likely to develop toenails fungus. This usually happens when the fungus that causes athletes foot spreads to the toenails.
  • Staying barefoot: Walking barefoot in damp public places such as gyms, swimming pools, and shower rooms may expose your feet to fungi, leading to toenail fungus.
  • Nail Injuries: In case you get even minor injuries to your toenail or the skin around it, fungi may easily gain entry into the nail. Having skin conditions such as psoriasis may also cause sores around the toenail, subjecting it to fungus.
  • Fungal Nail Infection Treatment

    See your doctor if you think you have nail fungus. It can be tough to get rid of, and youâre more likely to have success with a prescription. Treatments include:

    • Oral antifungals. The doctor may give you a pill to kill fungus in your whole body. This is usually the best way to get rid of a nail infection. Treatment may last 2 months for an infection in your fingernails, or 3 months if itâs in your toenails.
    • Topical antifungals. You rub or brush these medicines onto your nails. They may work for a mild infection, but they canât get deep enough into the nail to cure a more serious one. You might use a topical treatment in combination with a pill.
    • Surgery. If other treatments donât work, the doctor may need to remove your nail entirely and let a healthy one grow back in its place. The new nail could also get infected.
    • Laser or photodynamic therapy. Doctors are studying newer treatments that use special light to try to kill the fungus.

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    What Causes Nail Fungus

    Tiny, microscopic organisms called fungi cause a fungal nail infection.

    Many people pick up the fungi when they have skin-to-skin contact with someone who has a fungal infection such as athletes foot or ringworm on their hands.

    Another common way to get a fungal nail infection is by walking barefoot in a warm, moist area such as a pool deck or locker room. These fungi thrive in warm, moist areas.

    You can also get a fungal nail infection by sharing an infected nail clipper or towel.

    But you dont have to catch it from someone. You can get it if your nails are frequently moist or you often wear sweaty socks and shoes.

    The fungi usually infect a nail by getting into a:

    • Small cut in the skin surrounding your nail

    • Crack in your nail

    The area under a nail gives fungi a warm, moist place to grow. The infection can then spread to other nails and even your skin.

    ReferencesGupta A and Brintnell W. Onychomycosis: A complex disease? Poster presented at: 69th Annual Meeting of the American Academy of Dermatology 2011 Feb 4-8 New Orleans.

    Gold LFS and Rosen T. Onychomycosis: Diagnosis, treatment, and prevention strategies. Dermatology News . March 2016:2-15.

    Verma S and Heffernan MP. Onychomycosis. In: Wolff K, Goldsmith LA, et al. Fitzpatricks Dermatology in General Medicine . McGraw Hill Medical, New York, 2008: 1817-20.

    Specific Risk Factors For Diabetics

    How Does Toenail Fungus Cause Toenail Discoloration

    Because nail fungus may recur even after successful treatment, daily foot care is a habit worth cultivating, especially if you are a diabetic patient, have a weakened immune system, or have poor circulation. Older people are at risk for developing nail fungal infections simply because they may have more years of exposure to fungi and have slower growing toenails. Other factors may exacerbate risk of infection, including heavy foot sweating, blisters, foot ulcers, and walking barefoot around swimming pools or public shower rooms.

    Pay attention to diabetic health care risk factors like reduced blood flow and circulation to your feet, which may encourage fungal infection. Untreated, toenail onychomycosis can become painful and even cause permanent damage to your nails. Because youre already at risk for cellulitis , even a minor injury to your feet, including fungal nail infections, can lead to serious complications and, in severe cases, even nerve damage. Good foot care is a vital part of good health care for every diabetic.

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    All About Nail Fungus

    This site is dedicated to providing you with the best information regarding nail fungus its symptoms, causal factors, characteristics, available treatments and preventative measures you can take. Medically, it is known as onychomycosis or tinea unguium, and is a very common condition that begins as a white or yellow spot underneath your fingernail or toenail. Nail fungus can also cause your nail to discolor, split, crack, thicken and crumble at the edge. It can cause a lot of discomfort as well as causing embarrassment due to its unsightly appearance. We aim to provide the most comprehensive resource available about nail fungus and how to effectively treat it quickly and effectively, even ways to prevent future outbreaks.

    We provide you with impartial, up-to-the-minute information regarding this very common infection, which affects many individuals. Symptoms vary between individuals, as does the length, frequency and duration of the infection. Nail Fungus spreads quickly, so understanding its causes and what preventative measures you can take will help eradicate this uncomfortable condition, once and for all.

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    What Are The Risks Of Leaving Toenail Fungus Untreated

    Some of the risk factors include:

    • Thick, misshapen toenails that cause pain when walking or wearing shoes.
    • Spread of the fungus, resulting in athletes foot, or to the genitals, resulting in jock itch.
    • Widespread infection resulting in cellulitis, which is a risk especially for individuals with a compromised immune system.
    • Avulsion or loss of nails if the infection isnt treated or doesnt get better.

    How Can I Prevent Toenail Fungus

    The Truth About Toenail Fungus Remedies â Worry Free Pedi

    Theres no way to guarantee that you wont get toenail fungus. But you can take several steps to help prevent it:

    • Avoid going barefoot in communal areas such as hotel rooms / showers, public showers, locker rooms and swimming pools. Most people pick up fungus in these situations. It helps to wear flip flops in these public areas.
    • If you have a family member with foot fungus or nail fungus, try to use different shower or wear flip flops in the shower to avoid coming in contact with it.
    • Trauma due to accidental or aggressive clipping of the nails can turn into portals of entry for the fungus.
    • Clean your nail trimmer before using it.
    • Do not tear or rip your toenails on purpose.
    • If you have diabetes, follow all foot care recommendations from your healthcare provider.
    • Keep your feet dry. Make sure to fully dry your feet after a shower.
    • Soak toenails in warm water before cutting them. Or you can cut your nails after a shower or bath.
    • Trim toenails straight across .
    • Wear shoes that fit correctly. They should not be too loose or tight around the toes.

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