There are many kinds of toenail infections but among them toenail fungus which is scientifically known as onychomycosis is the most common. If you have toenail fungus or is concerned about it then you have come to the right place because this article will tackle everything there is to know about toenail fungus or onychomycosis, particularly nail fungus symptoms, causes and cures.
What causes onychomycosis?
It is caused by a type of fungus known as dermatophytes. This is the same kind of fungus that causes other infections such as ring worm and jock itch. Dermatophytes are anaerobic organisms meaning they thrive well even in conditions without oxygen and they feed on keratin, which is the protein that makes up the nails and hair. In the process of eating off the keratin from the toenails, the dermatophytes eventually destroy the whole foundation of the nail. Dermatophytes can be found in warm and wet places. A good example of which are public water facilities such as public swimming pools and public showers.
What are the symptoms of onychomycosis?
The main symptom of this disease include discoloration and distortion of the nails. People suffering from onychomycosis will see their nails turn from pale yellow, to dark Fungus Clear brown to black. The nails will also begin to get bent and soon after pain and irritation will be felt. People are advised to immediately see a doctor upon seeing the initial symptoms of toenail fungus. When left untreated, this disease will spread to the cover the whole nail and will greatly deteriorate the appearance of the whole feet.
Who can acquire fungus?
No one is safe from toenail fungus. Anyone who gets exposed to dermatophytes are at risk of getting this disease. If you have diabetes, psoriasis or leukemia, then you should be extra careful because studies haves shown that persons with the above mentioned diseases are several times more likely to acquire onychomycosis than those who do not have these diseases. Men and individuals 60 years old and above are also at greater risk from getting toenail fungus.
How to cure nail fungus?
This disease is very hard to treat. This is because the infection usually sets deep within the nail. There are many available treatments for toenail fungus both conventional and alternative. Generally, alternative treatments are considered safer because they don’t have any of the side effects that are common among conventional medicines. Before choosing any mode of treatment for toenail fungus, be sure to consult your doctor first.
I hope you have learned a lot about nail fungus symptoms, causes and cures in this article.