White Toenail Fungus: Causes and Treatments

White toenail fungus is a fungi that afflicts different people by invading the nail bed of the toenail and causing discoloration, disfigurement, as well, as thickening and splitting of the nail. While this white nail fungus can be only a cosmetic affliction, over time, it can become a cause of pain and irritation due to the thickening and splitting of the nail. There are different causes for this fungal infection of the nail, and many of the causes can be easily avoided through cleanliness and proper care of your nails which can help to prevent the infestation of the fungus in the nail bed.

White Toenail Fungus

White toenail fungus is caused by a fungi known as Onychomycosis which is common in older adults, this fungus is also the cause of many other fungal afflictions as it is also the cause of athlete’s foot. It has become known that this fungi is also associated with those who don’t take proper care of their diabetes and possess weakened immune systems. Those who have this fungus under toenails should seek treatment as soon as it is noticed to avoid any damage or loss of the nail. There are many treatments that you can seek to cure toenail fungus which can provide you with many options to choose from when getting rid of the affliction.

Toenail Fungus Treatments

There are many treatment options that you can choose from to get rid of white toe fungus that can be used as soon as you notice it or begin seeing symptoms. You can use various home remedies to kill the fungus, over the counter creams and topical treatments, and even visit your doctor for prescription medications for internal forms of treatment. Each treatment possesses an advantage against the fungi beneath your nails and can help in curing the toenail fungus quickly before any serious damage can be done. Many doctors will recommend choosing more than one treatment method to ensure that the fungi can be eradicated more quickly.

Home Remedies

When suffering from a toe nail infection caused by toenail fungus, it is best to immediately start treatment to ensure the speed of the cure process is quick. So when you first discover your fungal issue, why not begin with a few home remedies such as soaking your feet in Listerine and water, or apple cider vinegar to get the healing process started without wasting time. These remedies can easily be located online on a variety of different sites and can provide you with a great deal of peace when handling the fungal infection. You can choose to use only home remedies, however, it has been known to take about a month or two to cure the fungus and should be done for approximately a year to prevent any re-infection.

Over-The-Counter

Simply by speaking to your pharmacist, you can find dozens of topical over-the-counter treatments for nail fungus, however, there is no guarantee they will work at the speed you want them to. The length of time that it can take for the non-prescription creams to affect the fungi visually can depend on the severity of the fungal infection and how you use the creams and gels. While over the counter medications and treatments may be convenient, they can take a while to work and could use a little bit of help from other treatment methods. Some doctors suggest that if you use an over the counter treatment that you should consider combining it with a home remedy routine or prescription medication to ensure quick eradication of the fungal infection.

Prescription Medications

Making an appointment with your doctor when you notice a fungal infection of the nail and nail bed is a good course of action to ensure the fungus is dealt with quickly and safely. Your doctor may suggest not only a topical treatment method through over the counter and home remedies, but also prescribe you with an internal treatment as well. These medications that are anti-fungal medications for internal use generally come in the form of pills. The pills provide a dosage of anti-fungal medication which works its way through your bloodstream to the affected area to combat the nail fungus from the inside out. To ensure the best results from these kinds of internal medications, an external or topical treatment plan should be used with the approval of your doctor to not only cure the fungus from the inside out, but also the outside in.

Talking to Your Doctor

When you speak to your doctor about your toenail fungus infection, ensure that they properly examine the fungi to get an idea as to how long you have had it. Knowing how advanced the fungus is can help to determine the length of time that it may take to cure the fungal infection and get you back on a fungus-free track. Speaking to your doctor about how you may have contracted the fungus is also important to help you narrow down the cause so you may avoid it later in the future. You should also ask about nail care for not only treatment of the fungus but to ensure the fungal infection does not return as many people who end up with white fungus under their nails have reoccurrences of the fungus. Be sure to discuss treatment options as well as any side effects that you may experience to ensure you know what the risks are for each of your options.

Causes

There are many causes of nail fungus that you should be aware of, even if you haven’t had toenail fungus before. Things such as wet socks and shoes can allow you to pick up fungi and allow it to settle into the nail bed. Wearing shoes that don’t breathe or wick away sweat can also allow a fungi to invade the nail bed of your toenails. Not wearing shower shoes in public showers can allow you to pick up fungi from the floor that was left behind by someone who was affected by nail fungus or athlete’s foot can cause you to suffer from nail fungus. If you ever go to a salon to get your nails done, be sure that all equipment used is properly sanitized to ensure you can avoid a fungal infection of the toenails. Each of these causes can be made worse by not taking care of your diabetes, having a weak immune system, or possessing poor hygiene.

How to Deal with Nail Fungus?

While treatment is the first step in dealing with nail fungus, there are many other problems that you may face simply because you have toenail fungus. Since you may experience a deterioration in self-confidence and self-esteem, it is best to remember that it is only temporary with treatment. You should also keep in mind that nobody is going to be looking at your toes within your shoes and as long as your shoes breathe properly and wick away sweat to keep your feet dry, close-toed shoes are fine. While many people may know and understand each of these things is true, speaking to your doctor about these problems can help you to counter the problems you may be facing because of the fungi under your nails.

Things to Avoid

There are a few things that you should avoid when dealing with nail fungus which you should keep in mind. First, never paint your nails as it will prevent your nails from breathing properly and may worsen the condition of your nails. You should also avoid allowing your feet to sit in moisture for long periods of time unless you are in the bath, shower, or using a home remedy that requires you to soak your feet. Keeping your feet dry is extremely important and can be done simply by keeping a small amount of baby powder with you and spare socks to ensure that whenever your feet become moist you can quickly handle it and prevent the fungi from thriving. You should also avoid public showers to keep the fungi from spreading from person to person, carry shower shoes with you as well to avoid reoccurrences of the fungal infection.

Conclusion

Starting treatment for fungal infections can not only help to avoid advancements in the fungi’s growth in the nail bed. You should also consider contacting your doctor as soon as you realize the fungi beneath your nails to properly get help in curing the fungus. Combining home remedies with other anti-fungal treatments can not only speed up the process of curing the fungal infection, but prevent it from advancing and thriving. While toenail fungus can be an uncomfortable and unsightly problem that everyone may face at some point in their lives, it is good to remember that there are ways to kill the fungus beneath the nail and obtain our healthy looking toenails once again. With proper treatment, diligence, and consistency, you will be back in your open-toed shoes in a flash.

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