What is Nail Fungus: Its Prevention and Treatment Options  
Skin disorders    As the name suggest, nail fungus, affects your nails. The beginning of the nail fungus infection is a spot of white and yellow on the tip of the toe nail or f ingernail. The nail discolors progressively as the nail fungus spreads deeper through the nail. It becomes unsightly and painful.
Poison Ivy is a plant found, commonly, across the United States. It generally has two forms. The first is a kind of hairy wine that grows attached to a tree. The second is weed like, and grows close to the ground, and is found in clusters.

Such an infection occurs when the nails are continuously exposed to factors like sweaty shoes, moisture, etc. Nail fungus infection is not easy to treat and has a recurring nature.

Causes and Symptoms

Nail fungus is caused by the infection of microscopic fungi that typically live in moist and warm environments. A fungus belonging to the dermatotphytes group of fungi is the root cause of Nail fungus.

A prolonged exposure to moisture or moist elements cause fungi, and thus the toe nails of a person have more tendencies to pick up nail fungus as they are exposed to more moisture than fingernails.

If your nails are infected by fungus then the visual symptoms are:

 Unnatural thickening of the nail/nails
 Distortion of shape.
 Dullness
 Nails develop a crumbly look, and become brittle
 Debris collects under the nail, does giving it a far darker appearance.

Prevention of Nail Fungus

Prevention of nail fungus is easy if the following pointers are taken into consideration:

 Trim your nails regularly, and keep them dry and clean after having a bath or if they have been in contact with water.
 Socks, which you wear, must be such that they don’t create a sweaty environment for your feet.
 Sprinkle your feet with antifungal powder or sprays.
 Always protect your hand nails with rubber gloves, if you are working with/in water.
 Avoid going bare foot in public places.
 If your nail gets infected and you touch it for some reason, wash you hand thoroughly
 If you manicure and pedicure on a regular basis, then it’s advisable that you choose a reputable salon. Such a salon will use sterilized equipments.

Treatment Options for Nail Fungus

 Oral medications are prescribed by doctors for treating nail fungus. Medications like Terbinafine, Fluconazole, and Itraconazole etc help in the growing of an infection free new nail.

These medications need to be consumed for a period between 6 and 12 weeks. However, it’s only after the new nails has grown, that you will see the result of the medication.
 Topical anti-fungal medications can also be applied to the affected area. At times, doctors ask patients to use these creams in conjunction with a few over-the-counter lotions that contain urea. This is just to speed up the process of absorption.
 Antifungal nail polish is also prescribed if the nail fungus has a mild to moderate intensity. The nail polish, called Cicolopirox or Penlac can be applied to the infected nails and the surrounding skin area. This has to be left for a week, and at the end of the week has to be cleaned off. After this a fresh coat of this antifungal lacquer has to be applied.

As can be seen treatment of nail fungus is difficult but not impossible. You just have to be diligent and use it as per instruction.


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