Have bad ugly nails? Have fingernails feeling dull, brittle or crack-prone? How about toe fingernails appearing to be thick, yellowish, off-white or brownish? Much worse, do you have fingernails the color of green, moss green, gray or black? If you answered yes to these questions, then take a deep breath, because you might have Nail fungus. Nail fungus or “Onychomycosis” is a fungal infection in one or more of your nails. This can affect not only on your finger toes which are most prone to exposure of dirt and infection, but it can also occur on your finger nails. This condition, although common and less grave, can pose a threat to one’s lifestyle; especially to women where having this disease can be an embarrassment to the public.
What are fungi?
A fungus is a single-celled or multicellular organism, that are able to lodge to one’s skin and cause infections. Mushrooms are a common example of fungi. Of course, Nail fungal infections do not grow mushrooms in feet.It is caused by dermatophytes, a particular group of fungi. Sometimes, other possible causes include yeasts and molds.
How do you spot Nail fungi formation?
You might see that your nails have become somewhat different. The most prominent description of a nail fungus or toe nail fungus is thickened and discolored nails. Colors can differ; starting from off-white to yellowish and brownish. Depending on the type of nail fungus, the color can also become green or black in color. As the infection grow, the nail will then become brittle. You will notice that a few pieces breaks off from the toe or finger completely. This poses threats to the skin surrounding the nail as it can become inflamed and swollen due to the infection.
How do you contract nail fungus / toenail fungus?
To know why an organism infects our skin or nail in this case, we will need to know how the organism thrives to live. These nail fungal infections usually affect your skin since they survive by eating keratin, a human protein that builds your skin, hair and nails. They can enter by means of tiny visible cuts or through the small separation between your nails and your nail bed. These microorganisms also live in warm, moist environments including bathrooms and tropical outdoors, so nails most prone to infection are those which are continuously exposed to dampness.
How do you treat Nail fungi?
Before nail fungus treatment is presented, your doctor must examine the infected nail first, as many other nail abnormalities can mask the same signs and symptoms. To test for fungi, your doctor may abrade some debris from under the affected nail for investigation. Nail fungus treatment is hard since the fungus is imbedded deep into the nail bed and is difficult to reach. However, nail fungus treatments can either be administered orally like “itraconazole” or topical creams / ointments such as “ciclopiroxolamine”. Another form of topical medication for nail fungi treatment is in nail paint, wherein it needs to be applied for prolonged periods.