When one person has nail fungus, it is common for members of their family to have it as well. Because of this, it is a common misconception that toenail fungus is hereditary. While family cases of toenail fungus are frequent, this is because of the nature of the fungal spores itself rather than indicative of any underlying predispositions. 

Genes alone can’t account for fungal infection; this condition occurs when a fungus from outside of your body invades your nail bed. Since the body doesn’t produce the fungus itself, this condition is never the consequence of familial inheritance. With that being said, there are certain hereditary factors that can contribute to nail fungus infection. These factors may predispose you to fungal infection by making your nail bed a more suitable environment for fungal growth. In particular, certain hereditary immune disorders can increase susceptibility to fungal infections. These disorders lower your body’s ability to fight off the fungus once it enters the nail, which makes it easier for the fungus to grow. Families with hereditary immune deficiencies can take care to avoid environments where fungus thrives and maintain proper hygiene. These families should also avoid sharing nail clippers, shoes, or socks.

More commonly than hereditary immunodeficiencies, families may infect each other with fungus because of close proximity. Toenail fungus can survive on floors, nail clippers, and carpets. Because family members tend to walk barefoot in their home and share nail grooming tools, nail fungus can easily spread inside a family. This is the main reason why it is common for multiple members of the same family to catch a toenail fungus. If you or a family member thinks they have a toenail fungus, you should seek out an FDA approved treatment by a licensed podiatrist. The PinPointe laser is the best option to treat toenail fungus since it only requires one treatment and has no side effects. To schedule a consultation for the PinPointe laser treatment with a podiatrist, give us a call at 1-(800) 672-0625 or visit our website for more information.