A fungal Infection can cause discoloration and deformation of the nails. It usually is not painful and may seem more like a cosmetic issue than a health problem. It can be easy to ignore and put off visiting the doctor to have it checked or treated. But when ignored, toenail fungus can get worse and potentially lead to a more complicated health issue. If not taken care of immediately, a nail fungus infection can cause foot pain, spread of fungus beyond the nail, or even loss of the nail.
A toenail fungus infection initially infects a small part of a nail. It can start as a white or yellow spot on the nail that can easily be ignored. As time goes by, this spot can grow and spread to the whole nail. In severe cases, the nail can become thick and deformed. Although toenail fungus doesn’t really cause pain, the deformity of the nail can. It would also make it difficult to wear shoes and walk around.
The fungus that affects the nail is called dermatophytes, which is the same type of fungus that causes athlete’s foot, jock itch, and ringworm. If toenail fungus is left untreated, the fungus can spread to other parts of the body. If you wear socks and closed shoes for long periods of time, the fungus can spread easily because they thrive in warm, dark, and moist environments. It can spread to the toes, causing athlete’s foot.
The nail plate can also fall off due to a fungal nail infection. The fungus can grow on the between the nail and the nail bed, causing them to separate. Moreover, the nail can also become brittle and eventually fall off.
Nail fungus is very difficult to treat because the fungus can go under the nail and between the layers of the nail plate. This makes it difficult to reach especially by topical medication. However, there is Laser treatment that can penetrate the nail and kill the fungus using laser heat. As the fungus grows, the more difficult it is to treat. It is important to have your nails checked out immediately once you see symptoms. Click here for a free consultation.